Founding Partners: Manuel Torres, Federico Araujo, Rodolfo Plaz
President: Rodolfo Plaz
Senior Partners: Guillermo de la Rosa, Juan Domingo Alfonzo, Juan Carlos Garantón Blanco, Luis Gonzalo Monteverde, Jesús Escudero, Valentina Cabrera, Valmy Diaz
Number of partners: 10
Number of other lawyers: 16
Torres Plaz & Araujo (TPA) is a full service law firm, originally established as a tax boutique in 1972. The firm is a full-service law firm in Venezuela, recognised by clients and peers around the country and overseas. The values that have allowed TPA to be considered such a top firm are its drive for innovative solutions and a commitment to its clients. Over the years, TPA has relied on professional excellence, responsiveness, integrity and – above all – a professional culture, not limitedat identifying the issues under the law, but at integrating the analysis with financial knowledge and an understanding of how said issues play for its clients. A good number of its members are renowned professors, lecturers and speakers in the national and international arena.
TPA is the exclusive Venezuelan member of Latin American Tax and Legal Network (LATAXNET) and of the State Capital Global Law Firm Group.
Main Areas of Practice:
TPA is the leader in the field of tax law practice, a leadership which is based in its long term experience and savvy in structuring and restructuring businesses into Venezuela and overseas. The firm has acted as special tax counsel in large cross-border transactions and has particular expertise with regard to the interrelation between domestic tax law, foreign tax law and tax treaties. TPA professionals are experienced in assisting clients with all features of taxation, including areas such as tax planning, anti-deferral regimes, transfer pricing, tax litigation and tax compliance.
TPA provides legal support in all relevant features of commercial life, assisting on structuring foreign investments in Venezuela in order to secure protection in a changing environment and optimising the use of bilateral investment treaties. TPA advises in major corporate and project finance, M&A, bankruptcy law, banking and financial matters, asset protection and capital markets.
Antitrust & Competition:
TPA is one of the leaders in the field of antitrust and competition practice in the Venezuelan market. The team of specialists handles all issues related to international and local unfair competition, covering the application of legislation prohibiting restrictive practices and abuse of market power, defence of competition (unfair competition, concentrations or mergers and unilateral practices); dispute resolution, economic and commercial integration.
In depth knowledge and experience makes TPA a key player in structuring oil and gas projects in Venezuela (both upstream and downstream), as well as advising petrochemical ventures and oil and gas contractors (on-shore and off-shore). The breadth of TPA’s expertise ranges from its advice since the mid 80s and in much of the opening in the 90s, including major project finances for Faja projects, to the migration of Operating Services Agreements and Association Agreements into Joint Ventures (Empresas Mixtas), and the negotiation of new blocks for Empresas Mixtas and gas licences.
The representation of the rights and interests of clients, and engaging in negotiations and discussions with public sector authorities are currently among the most demanding services offered. TPA also has significant experience in assisting and resolving conflicts with the administration in all regulatory matters, including attention of clients in procedures before Indepabis.
Litigation, Dispute Resolution & Arbitration:
All modern forms of resolving differences, in the area of traditional litigation, are handled by the firm’s team, always showing its significant experience in dealing effectively with high level litigation cases including: insolvency cases and bankruptcy procedures. TPA offers advice in civil, commercial and labour-related proceedings, as well as local and international arbitration matters.
Family Businesses & Personnel Wealth Structuring:
TPA has long been recognised for its experience offering advice in the structuring and management of family businesses and in wealth structuring for high net worth individuals and families, locally and abroad.
Fair Price (Consumer Protection):
TPA has an outstanding experience in customer services proceedings endorsed by the Superintendencia Nacional para la Defensa de los Derechos Socioeconómicos (Sundde) as well as in advising clients on the analysis and determination of their costs structure for the purposes of a law of fair prices (Ley de Precios Justos).
TPA has successfully managed the most relevant aeronautical accidents taking place in Venezuela. The firm offers comprehensive services in the field of aeronautical law, focusing its practice on aircraft acquisitions and advising in the regulatory aspects of commercial and private aviation. It also addresses liability derived from aeronautical activities in general and the rights of insurance companies in this particular field.
TPA has developed a long standing international experience that has allowed the firm to successfully and continuously represent many of the top world’s leading international companies. The firm’s experience and knowledge allows it to render advice in complex and sophisticated cross-border and multi-jurisdictional transactions, including corporate restructuring, investment protection and tax efficiency advice of most of high profile projects in hydrocarbons, petrochemical, mining and energy areas, active participation on the advice for expropriations, takeovers and acquisitions negotiations with between private parties or by the Government, including international and institutional arbitration cases, encompassing acting as expert witnesses in areas such as mining, banking, insurance and finance matters.
Spanish, English, Italian, French.