Current View:

This content is provided by van Cutsem Wittamer Marnef & Partners.

Website: www.vancutsem.be
Tel: +32 2 543 02 00
Fax: +32 538 13 78

Managing Partner: Pierre Van Fraeyenhoven
Number of Partners: 19
Total Number of Lawyers: 38
Languages: Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Spanish

FIRM OVERVIEW:
van Cutsem Wittamer Marnef & Partners was set up in 1977 as a Belgian independent law firm with a wide domestic and international expertise in most fields of business law.

The firm works to the highest professional standards and is dedicated to achieving its client’s goals in an efficient and costeffective manner.

The firm’s lawyers are all legal advisor and litigators and are thus able to take over all the legal tasks relating to a specific matter. Some of them have extensive experience regarding the representation of clients before national and international arbitration courts.

While each client works closely with a specifically assigned contact lawyer, the latter will draw upon the specific expertise and knowledge of the other lawyers active in the firm. This way of working enables the firm to deal with complex matters and transactions.

The firm’s clients are both Belgian and foreign companies in addition to international groups, active in various economic sectors, like banking and insurance companies, industrial and commercial companies, investments and private equity funds, agricultural and mining companies, international financial payment messaging, national and international public funding institutions.

Moreover, the firm developed a strong Africa practice covering numerous sub-Saharan countries, and in particular the Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon where it works closely with its associated offices.

MAIN AREAS OF PRACTICE:
Several partners are active in more than one department.

Commercial & Contract Law:
Number of partners: 9
The firm’s services in this field of law include proactive advice on the structuring of the client’s activity, drafting, negotiation of agreements and litigation management, notably in the field of distribution.

Corporate Law:
Number of partners: 5
The firm’s services include the incorporation of new companies and the setting up of branches and subsidiaries of foreign companies, the drafting of shareholders agreements, the mergers and splitting of existing companies, the winding-up of companies and the corporate housekeeping.

Mergers & Acquisition/Private Equity:
Number of partners: 3
The firm’s M&A lawyers have extensive experience advising buyers and sellers, investors and financial institutions on a broad range of M&A transactions including share and asset deals, leveraged and management buy outs, equity investments, joint-ventures and reorganisations.

Insurance & Liability Law:
Number of partners: 5
The firm notably assists insurance companies in the drafting of all kinds of insurance contracts and broker or agent agreements.

It advises its clients and represents them in court regarding any issue relating to insurance coverage.

Over years, it developed extensive expertise regarding tort and liability, compensation and damage assessment.

Banking & Financial Law:
Number of partners: 3
The firm advises banking companies on any issue linked to financial products and securities. It also conducts lawsuits for banking companies and private clients.

IT/IP/Data Protection:
Number of partners: 1
The firm assists clients in the management of their intellectual property portfolios with a particular focus on the prosecution of trademarks on a global scale. The IT/IP team has extensive experience in copyright, databases, trademarks, patents, information and communication technologies and personal data protection.

Estate & Inheritance Law:
Number of partners: 1
The firm advises clients, both in Belgium and internationally on structuring and planning their estate optimally, in line with their aspirations and goals.

Real Estate & Construction Law:
Number of partners: 3
The firm assists its clients in negotiating and finalising any real estate transactions, structuring of co-ownership agreements and temporary associations, tendering for public procurement contracts.

Tax Law:
Number of partners: 1
The firm handles dealings with the tax authorities, including optimised resolution of disputes arising from taks audits. It has a wide expertise regarding tax issues related to the restructuring of enterprises and investment strategy.

Employment & Social Security:
Number of partners: 4
The firm provides assistance in drafting employment and management agreements, work regulations and policies, non-competition, confidentiality and exclusivity clauses, alternative forms of remuneration, etc. It negotiates amicable settlements and represents clients in court in any dispute linked to employment relationship.

Africa Business Law:
Number of partners: 1
The firm has a strong team of Africa specialised lawyers who provide comprehensive legal services to investors and operators doing business in sub-Saharan countries and mainly in the DRC and Cameroon.

It assists its clients in the commercial, corporate, financial, banking, telecoms, energy, real estate, transport, agriculture and natural resources sectors.

International:
To meet the needs of its clients, the firm developed, over 40 years, a strong network of independent foreign law firms among the best in their jurisdictions and sharing the same values. This “best friends” network enables the firm to support its clients in cross-border activities and disputes with highlevel international teams. The “best friends” relationships are non-exclusive. Thus, the firm’s lawyers remain free to work with the client’s usual legal advisers in any country whenever the clients wish us to do so.

Among others, the firm works internationally within renowned networks like Mackrell International which comprises about 100 independent law firms in more than 60 countries around the world.