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22 POELLATH professionals ranked in „The Legal 500 2022“

As part of the research for The Legal 500 Germany, an independent team of experienced editors conducts hundreds of interviews with lawyers each year and surveys more than 23,000 clients. This research is translated into a detailed analysis that provides a comprehensive and thorough assessment of more than 400 commercial law firms across a wide range of practice areas.

In the 2022 edition, POELLATH is recommended as a TOP-TIER LAW FIRM in the practice areas Private Clients/Non-Profit, Fund Structuring and in all other areas of expertise.

A total of 25 consultants are listed by name for their outstanding advisory services in their respective practice areas, including two consultants inducted into the “Hall of Fame” and two consultants ranked as “leading” in three areas of work and one professional as “rising star”.

Andreas Richter is one of the advisors inducted into the “Hall of Fame” for his outstanding advisory services for private clients, where, in addition to traditional legal duties, he also serves on supervisory boards and advisory boards of family businesses as executor and on the boards of charitable foundations. The team acts for entrepreneurial families, high net worth individuals and foundations, as well as for foreign trusts, and covers the entire spectrum of relevant issues in these areas. Clients appreciate the “combination of expertise in inheritance and family law with a strong focus on international family law and tax”. The latter is one of Stephan Viskorf’s specialties and he frequently deals with tax issues. Clients praise his “exceptional problem-solving ability and creativity”, his “powers of persuasion and the strong trust” that the other side also places in him. In addition, he is a “strong analyst” of complex tax issues. His advisory in an international environment is also met with approval. This specialized know-how in the combination of tax and inheritance/family law with a strong focus on international family law is only covered by a few law firms in Germany. Since marriages across national borders are not uncommon, especially in entrepreneurial families, the firm has developed a “strategically valuable market position here”.

Andreas Richter jointly heads the practice with foundation and non-profit specialist Katharina Gollan and Stephan Viskorf.

Maximilian Haag also receives high praise from clients for his tax law advice: “We have a large cross-border mandate with Maximilian Haag. He is highly professional, a quick thinker and always keeps an eye on the big picture. Clients trust him (and rightly so).” Another client is taken with the fact that he “is extremely competent and responsive and provides concrete answers. In addition, he is very pleasant and professional to deal with”. Katharina Hemmen is another core private client attorney alongside Martin Liebernickel who is also known for his tax expertise.

The entire tax team is praised for its “responsiveness and expertise, its ability to communicate and prepare complex issues in an understandable way” and its initiative and understanding of the underlying business model. The “inclusion, if necessary, of other specialists from the POELLATH team and also the transparent indication that one may not be able to conclusively assess topics in the first conversation and then coming back with brilliant solutions, however, distinguishes the practice”. “This creates lasting confidence in the resilience of the solutions and results.” The “uncomplicated, pragmatic, cooperative collaboration”, the adherence to deadlines, practical relevance, and the “close monitoring of case law and legislation”, which enables “early action”, are also acclaimed. Hardy Fischer receives special mention for his “professional competence, responsiveness and ability to develop pragmatic solutions adapted to the individual business model”. The division is attested the “highest professional competence”.

The importance of tax transaction support, also in the private equity and venture capital arena, is demonstrated by the appointment of Gerald Herrmann as partner at the beginning of 2021. Alongside Michael Best and Hardy Fischer, he is one of the “central contacts” for these matters.

The firm is highly regarded for its excellent transactional advisory services and corporate practice. It advises on general and shareholders’ meetings, corporate governance issues, corporate actions, reorganizations and changes of legal form and is mandated in this regard, in particular, by listed and family-owned German companies. In addition, practice head Eva Nase is experienced in advising on public takeovers with subsequent structural measures and is active in corporate law disputes such as actions for rescission and nullity against resolutions, as well as release proceedings and shareholder claims. Clients are enthusiastic about Eva Nase, who pursues a “proactive advisory approach”, is “always available” and overall demonstrates “the highest level of legal advice” with an “excellent focus on the client”, as does the entire team, which demonstrates “the highest level, both in legal topics and in client interaction” and provides “advice that is always to the point, never verbose, yet fully comprehensive”.

The firm is also known for its M&A work at the interfaces of private equity, venture capital and corporate, with expertise also in insolvency, restructuring, tax structuring, merger control and foreign trade law. This area is also led by Eva Nase and her colleague Jens Hörmann.

Here, the firm has another “leading” advisor in Benedikt Hohaus, particularly for his expertise in management advisory. His colleague Philipp von Braunschweig is also “excellent at managing family-owned transactions”. He is “very pragmatic, very patient and conscientious in preparing his clients on the sell side” and “focuses on finding a balanced solution”. Clients and market insiders overall are full of praise for the private equity and venture capital practices, especially for the firm’s “excellent expertise and high level of competence, strong communication, quick availability and accuracy”. Other attributes include the “strength of the team, experts recognized throughout Germany, strong attorney personalities, high partner involvement”. The “very high accessibility and availability, very good negotiation skills, excellent advisory services, trusting working relationship and the friendly relationship with all people, 100% commitment to us as clients - day and night!” round off the profile. Again, the close relationship with the tax area is highlighted.

On the tax side, there is also an extremely useful link between the transaction advisory and structuring side on the one hand and the practical tax advice on the other. The whole “package is also far less expensive than international competitors”. In addition to Benedikt Hohaus and Philipp von Braunschweig, Tim Kaufhold, Tobias Jäger and Michael Inhester are listed as core lawyers. The latter, together with Christian Tönies, leads the venture capital department. Christian Tönies has been inducted into the “Hall of Fame” for his excellent advisory services and is a “central contact” for start-ups. Counsel Sebastian Gerlinger, listed as a “Rising Star”, also attracted attention for his advice on VC equity financing and venture debt financing. Associate partner Katja Weberpals, with her focus on start-up financing and exits, also receives mention.

Berlin partner Amos Veith is listed as a “leader” in two practice areas: Firstly, for his outstanding private equity know-how and, secondly, for his excellent knowledge of funds, where the firm offers full-service advisory services based on “close integration of the areas of fund structuring, regulatory law and tax law”. Here too, clients are enthusiastic about the firm’s “high level of expertise, its comprehensive knowledge of the industry and its strong legal personalities”. Clients also find “experts recognized throughout Germany” who have earned this reputation through their “outstanding expertise, very fast and competent handling, very high accessibility and availability, very good and close support and exact adherence to deadlines”. Berlin partner Philip Schwarz van Berk received particular praise for his “comprehensive and proactive” advisory services and his “very pragmatic and solution-oriented conduct of negotiations”.

The real estate practice also receives high praise: References are impressed by the “short response and processing times, the high-level focus on service and the outstanding professional competence and market knowledge”. Quote: “The team is well-positioned, approachable and available around the clock and one always feels well looked after.” The attorneys are characterized by their “high level of professional expertise, great flexibility and a pronounced willingness to perform”. Clients especially appreciate the “very good and practice-oriented service, as well as the “negotiating power” of practice managers Matthias Durst and Stefan Lebek”. The latter is simply an “outstanding advisor”.

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Monika Goede
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