Venezuela

Reviews

Practice area

IFLR1000 Reviews

Overview

Solicitors governing body: Local bar associations

Competition authority: Superintendence for the Promotion and Protection of Free Competition (Pro-Competencia)

Financial regulator: Superintendencia de Bancos y Otras Instituciones Financieras

IFLR1000 ranking categories in this jurisdiction: 

Financial and corporate, Project development

Jurisdiction overview

Venezuela is a civil law legal system. After law school, lawyers are required to register with a Bar Association. Foreign lawyers must also register with a bar association in order to advise on international law. 

While arbitration is generally restricted to local lawyers, foreign lawyers can practice arbitration in specific cases if a bar association authorises them.

Requalification is possible for international lawyers, with a relatively simple process for lawyers in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Spain who can re-qualify if they pass an exam. Lawyers from all other jurisdictions must verify their degree with a Venezuelan Law School to determine additional classes that they need to take.

Both local and international firms are key players in the Venezuelan market.

Financial and corporate
Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie’s team has worked on reorganisations, restructurings, capitalisations and has advised on alternatives for the funding of local operations.  

Client feedback

"Practical legal opinions and quick response from the partner." - Regulatory 

D'Empaire

D'Empaire has a worked on a range of M&A deals in the country. One saw the firm advise Fairfax on the Venezuelan aspects of its acquisition of AIG businesses. On the banking side, the firm has advised Banco Exterior on granting syndicated loans to Venezuelan companies 

Key clients are Liberty Mutual and Grupo Ultra 

Despacho de Abogados miembros de Dentons

Despacho de Abogados miembros de Dentons maintains a leading financial and corporate practice. At time of press, all partners were at Norton Rose Fulbright, so all transactions completed during the research period were completed while at Norton Rose Fulbright. Energy and hydrocarbons continue to be active sectors for the firmTransactions include sales and financings.  

Client feedback

"A joy to deal with. The personalities of the partners and associates make instructing them an absolute pleasure. They will go above and beyond to get a fund over the line. Nothing is ever too much, and they know the market thoroughly, particularly in relation to funds listed on the London listed market." - Investment funds 

InterJuris Abogados

InterJuris Abogados is particularly active within the oil and gas sectors.  

Recent deals include corporate restructurings, acquisitionsand share transfers. The firm also advises clients on developing oil and gas activities and projects. One deal saw the firm advise on the Venezuelan aspects of Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s sale of its software business to Micro Focus.  

Despite difficult market conditions, the firm expanded its practice with the hire of partner José María Rivas from Harvest Natural Resources, and Luis Ortiz Álvarez from Raffalli de Lemos Halvorssen Ortega Ortiz Abogados. 

The firm advises the likes of Vinccler and Nodus International Bank.  

Client feedback

"It is a firm with a lot of market knowledge, with very good response times and high quality work. I feel very safe working with them." - M&A 

Mendoza Palacios Acedo Borjas Páez Pumar & Cía

Mendoza Palacios Acedo Borjas Páez Pumar is strong in M&and active in private equity =. The firm advised Colfax Corporation on the Venezuelan aspects of its sale of its fluid handling business and advised Evolvere Capital on requirements related to its acquisition of Solsica  

Norton Rose Fulbright (no longer trading - office joined Dentons in January 2019)

Norton Rose Fulbright maintains a leading financial and corporate practice. Energy and hydrocarbons continue to be active sectors for the firmTransactions include sales and financings.  

Client feedback

"A joy to deal with. The personalities of the partners and associates make instructing them an absolute pleasure. They will go above and beyond to get a fund over the line. Nothing is ever too much, and they know the market thoroughly, particularly in relation to funds listed on the London listed market." - Investment funds 

Raffalli de Lemos Halvorssen Ortega & Ortiz

Raffalli de Lemos Halvorssen Ortega & Ortiz has worked on acquisitions and spin-offs and provided corporate and regulatory advice to clients recentlyOne deal saw the firm advise AIG on the Venezuelan aspects of the sale of some of its business to Fairfax. 

Key clients include CNA Financial Corporation Group and Banco del Caribe.  

Travieso Evans Arria Rengel & Paz

Travieso Evans Arria Rengel & Paz has worked on restructurings, sales of assets and provided regulatory advice to clients. The firm helped Oracle restructure its operations in Venezuela.  

The firm advises the likes of Banco Occidental de DescuentoActivo Banco Universal, and Banco Mercantil.