Managing Partner: Aidyn Bikebayev
Number of partners: 7 Number of lawyers: 20
Languages:English, German, Kazakh, Polish, Russian
Since its inception on 25th December 1998, Sayat Zholshy & Partners has become a leader in the Kazakhstan market of legal services. Over the past two decades the firm has achieved unparalleled results. This is due to the firm’s founding creed — work in a team consisting exclusively of professionals, solve the problems of clients as thoroughly as the firm’s own and strive for the best international practices and standards.
Over a twenty-year period Sayat Zholshy & Partners was engaged in a number of the most substantial and complex transactions, including, but not limited to, sale and purchase of business in Kazakhstan. On a number of occasions, the firm provided transaction support in connection with strategic investments into the national economy. It represented clients in court litigation over billion-dollar disputes, including disputes with market regulators. It drafted laws, supported insolvent debtors’ bankruptcy and rehabilitation proceedings, and protected companies against illegal takeovers. The firm has extensive experience in the Kazakhstan market and is eager to put its experience and knowledge into practice for the benefit of its clients.
Sayat Zholshy & Partners represents a partnership of top-ranked lawyers, where partners delve into the problems and challenges of their clients themselves trying not to shift their responsibility to junior lawyers.
For the most efficient representation and timely legal support of clients in Kazakhstan, the firm has its offices in Almaty and Astana. However, when clients need the firm’s presence in other regions of Kazakhstan or abroad, Sayat Zholshy & Partners send its employees wherever is necessary.
Main Areas of Practice:
Corporate / M&A
Infrastructure & PPP
The protection of clients’ interests in the antimonopoly law area is of practical significance to the business of Sayat Zholshy & Partners. With the increasing need among business entities for legal support in their dealings with antimonopoly authorities, SZP has accumulated substantial experience in this area, including: integrated legal advice on a subscription basis to market undertakings; representing the interests of major market participants in Kazakhstan’s courts; agreeing an economic concentration with the competition agency and preparing and submitting an application for consent to an economic concentration (or notification); preparing appeals to the antimonopoly authority relating to the existence of unfair competition from other market undertakings and/or governmental authorities; complying with legislation on tariff regulation (the protection and amendment of tariffs); introduction of investment tariffs, and many others.
The firm provides services of prosecution avoidance, criminal defence, and confronting adversaries by employing criminal law methods. Matters dealt with include white collar crime, bribery and corruption, compliance and regulatory breaches, market manipulation, and embezzlement. The firm’s major strength is its team of attorneys who are licensed to appear as advocates before criminal judges and prosecuting authorities, and have excellent criminal defence capabilities, decades of legal experience and in-depth knowledge of underlying regulatory framework.
The litigation team of Sayat Zholshy & Partners has over 20 years unique experience in conducting all aspects of litigation covering courts of all jurisdictions and leading arbitration institutions throughout Kazakhstan. The team has been strong in litigation in connection with various disputes, including, but not limited to, tax debt recovery, investment, corporate and construction-related disputes. Besides, the firm has enormous experience in rehabilitation and bankruptcy proceedings, tax and customs disputes, IP disputes, enforcement of judgements/awards.
Sayat Zholshy & Partners has been recognised by leading international rating agencies as an outstanding corporate law and corporate governance/M&A team in Kazakhstan who has supported hundreds of 11 figure worth transactions.
The SZP legal practice covering this field has been rightly recognised as one of the strongest in Kazakhstan. Primarily, this fact is proved by the clients’ confidence and the projects the firm’s been involved in. The team has successfully consulted not only national and foreign private investors, but also quasi-government institutions in Kazakhstan, Russia and China, as well as international financial institutions.
Tax law is one of the SZP’s priorities due to our long-term experience and in-depth focus on this area of practice.
Sayat Zholshy & Partners offers its clients the whole range of high-quality professional legal services in the area of Kazakhstan taxation, including, but not limited to, advisory services; legal opinions and memoranda; transaction structuring (including transactions with non-residents, tax optimisation and tax planning) and relevant tax risk assessment; recommendations on the choice of the most optimal organisational and legal business structures; drafting requests to tax authorities for information and clarification; drafting responses to tax notices; assisting clients with routine tax issues and tax audits; and defending clients’ rights and interests in their dealings with tax and court authorities. It is worth mentioning the successful litigation practice of Sayat Zholshy & Partners in connection with tax disputes and appeals against actions (failure to act) and/or judgements of tax authorities.
The firm’s team has extensive experience in the filing of trademark applications, examination of license agreements, transfer of trademark rights, registration and protection of intellectual property, litigation, and drafting of license and assignment agreements. To provide clients with seamless service, members of the SZP’s IP practice frequently cooperate with lawyers from other areas of practice—such as litigation and antitrust law. The combination of tailored skills of IP, litigation and antitrust specialists is a powerful strategy that delivers optimal results to clients.
SZP advises companies from throughout the natural resources industry and related industries, including prospecting, production, trading, transportation companies within the oil and gas, mining and energy sectors. This practice area covers matters relating to subsurface use in Kazakhstan, from advising on how to obtain subsurface rights and the associated licences and permits to legal support for the prospecting and production process and the protection of clients’ rights in the courts and against state authorities.
The firm’s lawyers have considerable experience of providing legal services in the field of employment law, including drafting collective agreements and employment contracts, setting up labour relations systems, organising systems governing the internal circulation of documents and obtaining permits for the employment of foreigners. Lawyers also work in providing written consultations on employment disputes, exposing potential weaknesses within enterprises, conducting internal investigations, settling conflicts and participating in court proceedings.
Foreign Work Permits:
Obtaining work permits is one of the main problems for foreign companies in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Many years’ practice of rendering services for high-quality execution of documents for obtaining permits and licenses enabled SZP to become one of the recognised leaders rendering legal assistance in the area of authorisation system and licensing. The firm’s regular work in the area of rendering professional legal assistance to clients in obtaining, extending and replacement of permits for engagement of foreign employees in Kazakhstan enables them to take all specific features of the process into account and minimise the clients’ risks, time consumption, and financial costs.