Deloitte Legal recognised in 12 practice areas and Industry focuses in the 2022 Legal 500 rankings
A recommended law firm
14 April 2022
For its work as a Belgian and globally connected law firm, Deloitte Legal continues to be recommended by Legal 500 in their 2022 guide.
Banking, finance and capital markets
Deloitte Legal advises a wide range of corporate clients on equity capital markets and financing transactions, with strong expertise in financial services regulation and USPP markets, allowing it to work with clients to find innovative funding structures for transactions and restructurings. Other more recent areas of focus for the team include sustainable finance and Covid-19 recovery issues.
Client feedback includes: ‘Christoph Michiels and Laurent Godts are hard-working individuals with a high degree of flexibility. They are always available for their customers also during the weekends and communicate extremely well on the status and progress.’ They have a ‘very good knowledge of the market’ and are ‘hands on, they act as part of the company, readily available when support is needed.’ ‘Laurent Godts : knowledgeable, client oriented, solution oriented, pragmatic.’
Commercial, Corporate and M&A
Deloitte Legal advises domestic and foreign investors, companies, and financial institutions on a number of mid-market M&A and private equity mandates, alongside an active corporate governance and advisory offering, capital markets expertise and regulatory support. The practice, led by David Roelens, has industry expertise in the consumer, energy, life sciences, and technology sectors.
Testimonials include ‘Able to cater and adapt to the client’s needs. They cover a broad range of legal topics. They are cost-efficient. They are knowledgeable in matters of Belgium corporate and transaction law.’ ‘David Roelens understands his client’s needs and aligns the provision of services his team provides to that. This is pretty unique in the world of large law firms.’
A number of high-profile companies, financial institutions, and public bodies turn to the sizeable team at Deloitte Legal for representation in commercial disputes, tax litigation and conflict handling matters. The multi-office practice is also noted for its arbitration offering, where CEPANI members Jürgen Egger and Alain-Laurent Verbeke are key contacts. Annick Visschers is recommended for her broad tax acumen.
Testimonials include ‘Excellent Team for tax dispute resolution!’ and ‘Samuel Vanthienen is our direct contact regarding Tax dispute resolution. He is an excellent lawyer and negotiator!’
Beyond its clear expertise in tax-related matters, Deloitte Legal‘s employment, pensions and benefits practice assists a number of blue-chip clients with the implementation of flexible reward systems, executive compensation packages, international mobility work and data protection matters. Clients regard practice head Stijn Demeestere as a ‘brilliant lawyer’ and litigator who focuses on various dismissal cases and disputes before the Belgian labour courts.
Clients say ‘The team knows our company and its organisation and always provides us with practical hands-on advice.’ ‘Thomas De Donder and Stijn Demeestere have a unique hands-on style and combine that with an incredible knowledge of employment law.’ ‘Technically very strong and reliable, very pragmatic and creative. They think along with us as their client and translate the legal framework into practical advice that we can execute.’
Fraud and white-collar crime
Deloitte leverages its strength in tax controversy work, representing clients in a number of high-value tax fraud proceedings, including criminal cases, as well as tax audits, negotiations with regulatory authorities, and litigating before domestic and European courts. The practice combines litigation and risk management expertise alongside strong tax knowledge, and is led by Jürgen Egger, Annick Visschers and Johan Speecke.
Industry focus: Energy
Underpinned by its significant global footprint and cross-departmental collaboration, Deloitte Legal's climate and energy team works with a range of municipal bodies, regulators, and renewable energy suppliers on various regulatory and advisory mandates. Renewable energy support mechanisms, closed distribution systems and public procurement contracts are all key areas of expertise for the group. Practice lead Dominique Vanherck's broad expertise includes solar, wind power and the development of energy infrastructure projects. Kathleen De hornois is noted for her significant experience in public procurement and public-private partnerships.
Testimonials include ‘Open minded, outside-the-box thinking’, ‘Large team with a broad set of skills’ and ‘Pragmatic advisory approach.’
Industry focus: Healthcare and Life Science
Deloitte Legal's life sciences and healthcare practice is experienced in the full spectrum of corporate and venture capital work for clients in the biotech, medtech, and clean tech sectors. Distribution agreements, IP rights enforcement, and EU regulatory reviews are further core workflows for the team. A number of biotech and medtech start-ups and scale-ups routinely turn to Christoph Michiels for assistance throughout the development process. Benoît Féron and Kathleen De hornois are other names to note.
Industry focus: IT and Telecoms
Deloitte Legal is routinely engaged by clients active in the areas of textiles, data, streaming, energy and blockchain. The team also regularly advises on strategic alliances and joint ventures, and represents clients in investigations. Antwerp-based Jürgen Egger focuses on a range of commercial IT law issues, while Matthias Vierstraete - who splits his time between Ghent and Brussels - is noted for his capabilities in software development, e-commerce, domain name disputes and media law.
Industry focus: Transport
Deloitte Legal works across the full scope of the transport sector, assisting a host of public authorities and commercial entities operating at the Belgian, European, and international level. The team is especially noted for its advisory and regulatory capabilities in public-private partnership matters, legislative reviews, and studies commissioned by various government departments. The team is jointly led by corporate transaction specialists Marc Van Tieghem and Tim Baart, and the public law and regulatory expert Kathleen De hornois.
Testimonials speak of ‘Highly experienced lawyers’ and ‘Good knowledge of the legal issues.’
Insolvency and Restructuring
Deloitte Legal advises on a wide range of restructuring and insolvency processes, including related tax and regulatory issues, with clients including major international corporates and financial institutions acting as lenders. The practice partners with the international Deloitte network to service cross-border clients, as well as developing its own organic client base. The team is led by Jürgen Egger, who has notable expertise in the intersection between criminal and insolvency law, alongside Glenn Hansen, a specialist in insolvency and bankruptcy proceedings.
Real Estate & Construction
Deloitte Legal's 'pragmatic' team undertakes 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.
Client feedback includes ‘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‘.
Deloitte Legal covers the full range of tax advice and litigation, with focused teams covering transactional taxation, planning and structuring, indirect taxation, and contentious tax disputes. The firm advises a wide range of clients, including major international names, and has strong multi-disciplinary and cross-border capabilities. The team includes a number of senior specialists, with leaders including Danny Stas, a VAT and indirect tax expert, international taxation-focused Tim Wustenberghs, Annick Visschers, a leading figure in tax controversy work, and Mathieu Ex, who takes the lead on private client and wealth management matters. Alexander Baert has a strong record in global tax controversy work. Filip Smet guides clients through contentious tax investigations, audits, and represents in associated litigation before Belgian courts.
Clients speak of the team’s ‘excellent strategic focus, fighting spirit and determination; very good knowledge of the ins and outs of the Belgian fiscal landscape.’ ‘My fixed contact person is Alexander Baert: besides being friendly, approachable and understanding, I really appreciate his understanding of our business, his eagerness to find solutions and to think with us and his help in assisting us to find answers from other jurisdictions as well his follow-up on the outcome. For me he is an example of how a lawyer should work.’