Deloitte Legal widely acknowledged in the latest Legal 500 rankings 

Legal 500 2021

27 April 2021

Banking & Finance 

The Banking & Finance practice head of practice Werner Van Lembergen and Laurent Godts received individual recognition respectively as Leading Individual and Rising Star.

The team is well known for advising on financial restructurings, commercial finance transactions and regulatory matters, among other areas. The client roster includes public authorities, domestic and international financial institutions, real estate entities and automotive sector companies.

Corporate & M&A 

The Corporate & M&A team offers legal and tax expertise in domestic and cross-border mid-market M&A and private equity deals, as well as debt and equity capital markets transactions. In the venture capital sphere, they are particularly active in matters with a nexus to the biotech and cleantech industries. Elsewhere, other mainstays of the practice include advice on corporate restructurings and governance issues. Director Kristof Maresceau was involved in the drafting of the new Belgian Companies Code. Another notable individual is Tim Baart, who was among the advisers to Cartamundi on its acquisition of the United States Playing Card Company. David Roelens is the head of the practice.

The team is outstanding in understanding the client’s DNA and adapts quickly to the preferred way of working, which enables a smooth collaboration in which in-house and external legal advisers overlap.‘ 

Dispute Resolution

Tax litigation forms the backbone of Deloitte Legal's practice, which has also been kept busy handling disputes for clients in the manufacturing, transport and financial sectors, among others. Jürgen Egger and Annick Visschers are key names.

Employment Practice

Stijn Demeestere leads the Employment at Deloitte Legal. Recent workload has covered employee benefits, collective dismissals and restructuring mandates. Senior associate Thomas De Donder is also a name to note. ‘Excellent combination of legal employment knowledge and pragmatic approach‘.

Fraud & White Collar crime

Deloitte Legal's business criminal law and tax controversy department advises on economic crime or money laundering matters, with a private and corporate client roster featuring financial institutions, investment entities and real estate developers. Antwerp-based practice co-head Jürgen Egger is known for handling criminal proceedings before regulatory bodies, including the banking commission (FSMA), while fellow co-heads Annick Visschers and Johan Speecke – based in Brussels and Kortrijk, respectively – specialise in tax risk management, litigation and recovery between them.

Industry focus: Energy

The 'proactive and responsive' multidisciplinary offering typically advises local governments, domestic transmission and distribution system operators, and renewable energy project developers on regulatory, transactional and M&A matters. Public sector and contracts specialist Kathleen De hornois heads the team, while senior associate and Rising Star Dominique Vanherck is also recognised as 'a good project manager' on cases concerning new development permits – particularly for electricity lines.  Testimonials include ‘A solution-provider. You notice the strength of having all knowledge under one rooftop.‘ and ‘The team is proven to have very good sector knowledge, being proactive and responsive with a multidisciplinary service offering.‘

Industry focus: Healthcare and life sciences

The Deloitte Legal life sciences and healthcare practice leverages its multi-disciplinary expertise in corporate, commercial and data protection cases, with a particular venture capital and EU regulatory focus. Christel Brion and Christoph Michiels co-head the team; Brion advises pharmaceutical clients on clinical studies, market compliance and IP litigation, while Michiels assists biotech and medtech start-ups and scale-ups through the course of various financial issues and equity investment rounds.

Industry focus: IT & Telecoms

Deloitte Legal's IT and IP department is headed by commercial and criminal law expert Jürgen Egger in Antwerp, alongside Ghent-based director Matthias Vierstraete. Matter highlights involve the integration and launch of new platforms – including moves to cloud set-ups – data life cycle management and cybersecurity incidents.

Industry focus: Transport

Deloitte Legal benefits from a multi-disciplinary transport and logistics practice group which also has experience in the port and harbour sector. It leverages Brussels-based Kathleen De hornois' public law experience to advise on implementing legislation, the setting up of regional mobility plans and infrastructure projects for the Flemish government. Antwerp-based duo Marc Van tieghem and Tim Baart also offer advice on corporate agreements, M&A and financial reorganisations.

Real Estate & Construction

Deloitte Legal's 'pragmatic' Real Estate teamundertakes a broad cross-section of real estate work for clients; recent mandates included high-value transactions, as well as development projects. The group has a strong profile among investors, developers and public institutions. Next generation partner Maximillien van de Werve ('a real dealmaker') heads up the department. Kathleen De hornois is a key name for PPP matters.

‘Very good balance between a practical approach and theoretical knowledge in order to reach an effective solution. They are able to meet their deadlines, even if those are very short‘.

Tax Practice

The Tax practice (Tax Advisory and Tax Dispute Resolution) is praised for its 'good and solid advisory work'. The team includes managing partner Danny Stas, who has expertise in the VAT aspects of finance and real estate transactions, and corporate international tax expert Tim Wustenberghs. Private client work forms a core pillar of the practice, with Mathieu Ex and director Caroline Costermans leading the advice to businesses, families and high-net-worth individuals on the tax aspects of wealth management. On the contentious side, Annick Visschers is a Leading Individual in the tax controversy group, which handles tax litigation and tax risk management, among other areas. Director and Next Generation Partner Filip Smet is also recommended for contentious work.