Ratings and Awards
The Legal 500TAX - TIER 1
Historically known for its unsurpassed tax law capabilities, Pepeliaev Group houses a large, full-service team, offering a mix of diversified tax services concerning both personal and corporate taxation issues. The group is an excellent proposition for clients seeking defence in tax litigation proceedings; managing partner Sergey Pepeliaev and senior partner Rustem Ahmetshin are stalwarts in Moscow’s taxation market, with multiple high-profile court appearances including Russian Supreme Court cases. The team is equally adept at handling the pre-trial stage of tax disputes, where Natalia Kovalenko’s recent work particularly stands out. On the non-contentious side, the department handles all types of regulatory and tax accounting issues, international taxation mandates, and tax risks and overpayments. Its broad industry-specific expertise spans telecoms, media, consumer goods, transport and pharmaceuticals, among other sectors.
Rustem Ahmetshin - Pepeliaev Group
Natalia Kovalenko - Pepeliaev Group
Sergey Pepeliaev - Pepeliaev Group
Other key lawyers:
Sergey Pepeliaev; Natalia Kovalenko; Rustem Ahmetshin; Andrey Tereschenko
COMMERCIAL, CORPORATE AND M&A: ST PETERSBURG AND ELSEWHERE - TIER 2
Pepeliaev Group is adept at handling contentious corporate issues, corporate governance matters, due diligence assignments and investment projects. The department has also acted on multiple recent mandates in the oil and gas industry. Sergey Spasennov leads the practice; tax practice head Sergey Sosnovsky and real estate specialist Elena Krestyantseva are also key figures in the team.
Other key lawyers:
Ksenia Kulikova; Sergey Sosnovsky; Elena Krestyantseva
‘All lawyers were very professional, prompt, responsive and polite in communicating with us.’
‘Excellent adherence to deadlines; a full-fledged immersion of the firm in the client’s issue; a thorough study of all nuances of the project.’
EMPLOYMENT - TIER 2
The employment and migration practice at Pepeliaev Group is split into two teams, one headed up by Julia Borozdna, and one under the leadership of Anna Berlina. Borozdna has over 20 years' experience advising multinational and notable domestic companies on the full range of non-contentious labour law matters, and also frequently handles litigious work. Berlina is particularly known for assisting with employee dismissals, including on a large scale, and representing clients in their dealings with the State Labour Inspectorate and the Public Prosecutor's Office. Senior associate Dmitry Zykov is noted for his expertise in issues relating to data privacy.
Julia Borozdna; Anna Berlina; Dmitry Zykov
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY - TIER 2
Transactional specialist Valentina Orlova leads the team at Pepeliaev Group, and focuses on advising clients on entry into agreements regarding the use of IP and the disposal of exclusive rights, as well as assisting with e-commerce and advertising matters. For contentious work, senior associate Nikolay Medvedev is the key contact; he has significant experience protecting intellectual property rights before administrative and judicial authorities, including the Supreme Court and the Intellectual Property Court. Areas of recent growth for the firm include software licensing issues and disputes concerning violations of right to fonts.
Other key lawyers:
PRIVATE CLIENT - TIER 2
Pepeliaev Group is distinguished by its highly specialised team, which comprises a large number of experts. Managing partner Sergey Pepeliaev brings a wealth of experience in handling contentious and advisory taxation issues to the group, as does Rustem Ahmetshin, who heads up the tax practice. For family and inheritance law mandates, Julia Borozdna and Olga Puchkova are the names to note. On the litigious side, the key contacts are Yuri Vorobyev and Yulia Litovtseva; the latter is particularly active in bankruptcy proceedings and is frequently appointed as a mediator at both the pre-trial and trial stages.
Sergey Pepeliaev; Julia Borozdna; Rustem Ahmetshin; Yuri Vorobyev; Yulia Litovtseva
Other key lawyers:
REAL ESTATE AND CONSTRUCTION - TIER 2
Jointly led by Natalia Stenina and Alexey Konevsky, Pepeliaev Group’s real estate and construction practice is a key adviser for high-value domestic real estate transactions, due diligence projects and contractual arrangements. The department often acts alongside the firm's corporate and tax groups on transactional work, particularly in the energy and retail sectors. Praised for its ‘accuracy in details’ and ‘ability to work under tight deadlines’, the team also has significant experience advising on land law issues and construction projects.
Next Generation Partners
Natalia Stenina - Pepeliaev Group
Natalia Stenina; Alexey Konevsky
Other key lawyers:
‘We are very impressed by the fact that the team, with equal attention and thoroughness, works through both rather routine and complex and contradictory issues of project implementation. We appreciate the commitment that the team showed at every stage of the project. Sometimes it is difficult for consultants to focus on long-term projects, as this requires a wide variety of skills and approaches to emerging issues. But for Pepeliaev Group, this was definitely not a problem.’
‘Natalia Stenina, our key contact, has a high level of professional knowledge, as well as the ability to quickly acquire new skills as required by the project. She showed herself very well in a number of difficult and contradictory situations and managed to coordinate the work in such a way that the lawyers from her team also adhered to this line.’
‘High professionalism, accuracy in details, client focus, high level of responsibility, ability to work under tight deadlines and multitask.’
‘We work exclusively with class A office real estate and are convinced that activities in this area should be based on two main principles – a clear corporate governance structure and adherence to transparent practices in daily work. We try to strictly follow these principles and expect external consultants not only to apply this approach when preparing legal advice and opinions on our requests, but also to use similar principles in our activities. We consider cooperation with the real estate and construction practice of Pepeliaev Group very comfortable, both in terms of the level of professional training of experts, and in terms of the general principles of building work processes.’
‘Our projects at Pepeliaev Group are managed by Natalia Stenina. In cases where support is provided to us directly by her, we receive highly professional advice on a wide range of issues that are fully consistent with both our needs and existing legislation. If Natalia acts as the head of a team of lawyers of different specialisations, we are always confident in the optimal selection of team members and clear coordination of their work.’
RESTRUCTURING AND INSOLVENCY - TIER 2
Delivering services which are ‘excellent in terms of quality and professionalism’, Pepeliaev Group prides itself on prevailing in the majority of the insolvency cases it handles in court. This litigation strength is mirrored in the expertise of practice head Yulia Litovtseva, a former bankruptcy judge in a regional commercial court, who is ‘very attentive to the interests of the client’. Senior associate Leonid Barkov is particularly well-versed in acting on the side of Russian and foreign corporate defendants.
Yulia Litovtseva - Pepeliaev Group
Other key lawyers:
‘Yulia Litovtseva is a highly qualified specialist, who knows to support the client and search for a way out of difficult situations. She is very attentive to the interests of the client; open-minded to all issues as a head of the team, she contributes a lot to create a positive, efficient working atmosphere. Yulia possesses great human and professional qualities.’
‘Competent lawyers with high analytical skills and experience in many aspects of the profession. They are highly qualified specialists who professionally evaluate legal risks and have the ability to find the right solution in difficult situations. They have rapid response and efficiency in the preparation of documents. The priority of the team is always the successful solution of customer problems.’
‘Professionalism, high quality of products, excellent service, accessibility and quick response times are the main advantages of the firm. Highly recommended for those wishing legal assistance from a reputable reliable professional partner in the Russian Federation.’
‘Yulia Litovtseva has deep knowledge and extensive experience in Russian bankruptcy law; she was accessible 24/7. The work conducted by the team, which involved also court work, was excellent in terms of quality and professionalism. The advice on legal matters was always very focused and accurate. Response time was unbelievable, despite the voluminous documentation that had to be examined and the fact that most documentation involved translation into Russian. The best experience was the sense of security and confidence in relying on a professional in a completely unknown jurisdiction.’
COMPETITION - TIER 3
Elena Sokolovskaya brings her previous experience as departmental head of the FAS' legal division to her role as antitrust team lead at Pepeliaev Group. The group advises on a wide range of competition issues, such as public procurement, trade law, and foreign investments in various strategic sectors. The practice also handles contentious work, including acting in cartel and abuse of dominance cases.
‘Elena Sokolovskaya’s previous experience in the FAS is valuable, because knowing the FAS from the inside, she has the opportunity to look at any situation through the eyes of a regulator and give valuable practical advice on it. She is distinguished by her great attentiveness to clients, a sincere desire to help them and achieve objectivity in any matter and, of course, her high professionalism!’
‘High professional level, extensive specialised knowledge, awareness of current trends and trends in the area of state regulation, strong communication with clients and regulators.’
‘Elena Sokolovskaya is an experienced thinking specialist in the field of antitrust law enforcement. I consider her an unsurpassed specialist in the field under consideration.’
‘Pepeliaev Group LLC fully carefully delves into the client’s situation, does not limit itself to a formal analysis of legal norms, searches for individual solutions based on its own practice and on the experience and wishes of the client. The processing of requests is carried out promptly, feedback is constantly given.’
‘All colleagues are distinguished by high professional qualifications, an individual approach, quick feedback, comfortable communication (the ability to call, ask additional questions, get clarifications).’
‘An excellent combination of reasonable prices and high quality work.’
‘Elena Sokolovskaya is an excellent organiser, a high-level professional, excellent human qualities.’
‘Elena Sokolovskaya pays close attention to the client, shows the ability to understand the details and find a non-standard approach to intractable issues.’
TMT - TIER 3
At Pepeliaev Group, the cross-departmental team focuses on advising clients from the telecoms and media sectors. Tax issues and dispute resolution are areas of particular expertise for the firm. The group is also regularly involved with working groups created by legislative and executive authorities to respond to initiatives in the legal regulation concerning the TMT sector. Rustem Ahmetshin and Natalia Kovalenko are the names to note.
Rustem Ahmetshin; Natalia Kovalenko
DISPUTE RESOLUTION: LITIGATION - TIER 4
Pepeliaev Group is increasingly being instructed in relation to defamation disputes. A significant part of the team’s workload also involves contractual and corporate disputes; Roman Bevzenko is among the key contacts. Dispute resolution group leader Yuri Vorobyev has extensive experience acting on the defence side of Russian and international companies in commercial disputes. Ekaterina Lebedeva leads the international litigation practice.
Other key lawyers:
Natalia Travkina; Olga Syachinova; Roman Bevzenko
ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES - TIER 4
The offering at Pepeliaev Group utilises its close links with the firm's tax practice to provide clients from the fuel, mining and energy sectors with transactional advice, focusing particularly on the tax implications. Managing partner Sergey Pepeliaev is known for representing clients before the State Arbitration Courts and the Supreme Court. Natalia Stenina is another key name.
Sergey Pepeliaev; Natalia Stenina
‘An integrated approach, prompt response to problem solving, always on time, reasonable prices.’
‘Natalia Stenina: super-prompt response to requests, clear organisation of work, always gives high-quality results on time.’
‘The high professionalism of Pepeliaev Group’s lawyers includes a high level of communication with clients, deep practical and academic knowledge in the field of law, the choice of the most effective algorithms for solving problems and protecting the interests of the client.’
‘Strengths include the speed of processing complex requests, proactive stance and ability to take into account the strategic interests of the client.’
‘Prompt feedback, clear questions, good time-management, detailed analysis and suggestions, good risk assessment.’
‘Basically we communicate with Natalia Stenina. The advantage for us is that she oversees the regulation of the oil and gas industry, ecology and real estate at Pepeliaev Group. She is a good lawyer with a wide range of industry knowledge. She also effectively accompanies projects in which several jurisdictions are involved.’
‘Our key contact person is Natalia Stenina. She mainly provides support on real estate and regulation of the oil and gas industry, but at the same time always demonstrates her deep involvement in projects that require legal support from lawyers from other branches of law. In working with our company, Natalia has established herself not only as a good lawyer with impressive experience in the oil and gas sector, but also as an excellent manager who organises the work of the team.’
‘Over the years of co-operation, we have had the opportunity to work with many lawyers from different practices of Pepeliaev Group, however, our key contact person in the firm is Natalia Stenina. She is a very experienced lawyer with excellent skills in solving complex problems, including in crisis situations. We also appreciate her managerial skills, which allow us to form the optimal team of lawyers to support the project at every stage of its implementation.’
COMMERCIAL, CORPORATE AND M&A: MOSCOW - TIER 5
Ilya Bolotnov; Nikolay Solodovnikov; Sergei Shorin