Olivier RIVOIRE, LL.M.

Olivier Rivoire is our exclusively recommended Banking & Finance expert in Switzerland on the Advisory Excellence website. If you need assistance in this area, please contact Olivier directly using the contact details listed above.

After completing his legal studies at the University of Fribourg, Olivier was admitted to the Geneva bar in 2003. During 2006 and 2007 he studied at Georgetown University in Washington D.C (USA) where he earned an LL.M. degree in General Studies.

From 2003 to 2012, he worked for various law firms in Geneva and Zurich mainly in the areas of business law, insolvency and bankruptcy law, civil and commercial litigation.

In 2012, he joined the FINMA in Bern, banks division, authorisations section. As from 2014, he worked within the legal department of a large international banking group in Geneva and was involved in the wealth management and IT/BPO activities of the bank. He led the IT/BPO legal department. Afterwards, he joined the Legal & Transactions department of an independent Swiss-based banking group and was mainly in charge of litigation and regulatory projects.

He joined Bory & Partners as partner on 1 August 2019.

Committed to his clients and mindful of their needs, pragmatic, he advises and represents in court individuals, companies and non-governmental organisations, based in Switzerland or abroad.

Building on his experience as in-house counsel during several years, Olivier Rivoire mainly provides his services in the following fields of expertise: regulatory for financial intermediaries, in particular banks and independant wealth managers, company law, including contract law, employment law and immigration law, inheritance law and mediation.

In this last field of activity, he was certified in 2020 by the Federal Department of Finance as mediator within the meaning of the Federal Act on Financial Services, FinSA. He is also Committee member of the Groupement Pro Médiation.

Olivier Rivoire is a member of the Swiss Bar Association, the Geneva Bar Association, the Association of International Business Lawyers and the International Bar Association.

Firm Overview:

Since it was established in 1994, the firm has continued to grow dynamically, coherently and with an entrepreneurial spirit.

To date, the firm has nine partners. In 2002, Laurence Bory went into partnership with Emmanuel Ducrest. They were later joined by Corinne Nerfin and Jacques Berta in 2003. The team was further strengthened when Bernd Reinmüller joined in 2012, Emmanuelle Guiguet in 2016, Eric Alves de Souza in 2017, Olivier Rivoire in 2019 and Tatiana Gurbanov in 2021. Each of them came with proven and recognised experience and knowledge in their respective fields, their skills complementing each other.

The Firm’s partners, as well as its other lawyers, practice their profession with passion and determination. The Firm’s priority is to ensure a high level of competence and personalised service to its clients, be they individuals, legal entities or State entities. Guided by their clients’ interests, they do everything possible to arrive at the best possible solution, either amicably or, if necessary, by defending their rights before cantonal and federal authorities or before national and international arbitration bodies.

The Firm advises its clients in many spheres of daily life and business activity, in particular in the areas of family law, estate planning and inheritance law, contract law, corporate law, banking and finance law, real estate and tenancy law, labour and employment law, criminal law, immigration and pension law, and international business law.

In addition to their work within the Firm, the partners have always considered it natural and useful to be actively involved in parallel activities – as an associate judge at the Geneva courts, a law professor, a member of the lawyers’ supervisory body, a trainer at the Geneva Law School (“Ecole d’Avocature”), President of the Union Internationale des Avocats, or in a term of office as an independent board member.

This kind of involvement has enabled them to maintain close links with the judiciary, the academic and the business worlds, and to develop a wide network at local, national and international levels.

John Moetteli, Esq.

John Moetteli is our exclusively recommended Intellectual Property Law expert in Switzerland and Liechtenstein on the Advisory Excellence website. If you need assistance in this area, please contact John directly using the contact details listed above.

For about twenty years, John has been a practicing patent practitioner/Attorney-at-Law, licensed before the Swiss and Liechtenstein Patent Offices. John has represented famous individuals, luxury watch brands, as well as innovative companies, both small and large, before the U.S., Swiss, Liechtensteiner and International patent and trademark authorities.

His technical specialty is mechanical, IT, software, medical devices, and sports products. He is particularly specialised in preparing freedom to operate, invalidity and unenforceability opinions, as well as preparing and prosecuting patent, trademark and design applications. His experience preparing legal opinions gives him the ability to quickly and objectively assess infringement and validity, all helpful to fair and thoughtful determination in arbitration as well as in providing strategic litigation advice.

John is a member of the Association of International Business Lawyers (AIBL), the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), and the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI). He’s been inducted into the Order of the Barons and Order of the Coif, well-known honorary legal fraternities. He’s also the founder of the North American Attorney’s Association. He’s lectured for the Da Vinci School of Intellectual Property, the Swiss Patent Office, WIPO (as a WIPO Patent Expert) and the European Commission. He is currently lecturer in international intellectual property law for the Zurich School of Applied Sciences and has served as an IMD faculty for the Program for Executive Development (PED). He’s published several articles on the subject of intellectual property law as well.

Prior to moving to Switzerland over twenty years ago, John worked in the intellectual property section of Haynes & Boone LLP, a large general litigation firm with offices in Texas, Washington D.C. and Mexico City. He earned his Doctor of Jurisprudence magna cum laude from the University of Houston Law Center, a highly ranked law school. Prior to his experience with Haynes & Boone, John worked at NASA’s JSC with astronaut Joe Kerwin, the first physician in space. There his responsibilities included technology management as well as space station systems design. During this time, his work was featured on the Discovery Channel’s Invention Series cable television program.

John speaks fluent English, French and German.

John Neocleous

John Neocleous is our exclusively recommended Tax Services expert in Switzerland on the Advisory Excellence website. If you need assistance in this area, please contact John directly using the contact details above.

John is the Founder and Managing Partner of NCI Law Group. He holds an “LLB (Hons) from the University of East Anglia, a Master of Philosophy from the University of Sussex, and a Diploma in European Law from the European University Institute. Mr. Neocleous has lectured and published extensively in the areas of human rights, international tax and commercial law, and international criminal law. He has practiced internationally for more than 20 years, with an emphasis on solutions to complex international legal problems, including taxation, collection, contract and business law for high net worth clients. He is an active member of several professional organisations, including the International Bar Association, the Washington State, Cyprus, and American bar associations, the Bar Council and the Solicitors Regulation Authority of England and Wales, and the Ordre des Avocats Vaudois in Switzerland.

Firm Overview:

Welcome to the NCI Law Group. With offices in the US, UK, Switzerland, and Cyprus, our team of lawyers is uniquely positioned to provide comprehensive legal solutions to our clients. A multinational law practice with a proven track record of success, our philosophy is simple – quality, practical, cost-effective legal solutions, delivered in a timely manner. Simply put, we get things done.

The firm has received numerous awards for its practice of tax law, commercial law, corporate law, immigration, and innovation excellence. We handle transactions of all sizes and complexity and offer a full spectrum of international legal services. Our client base covers over 40 countries and ranges from private investors, to single owner start ups, governments, leading investment banks and financial institutions. We have built a reputation for quality, experience, and with our business acumen, for helping our clients move from strategy to strength.

Thierry Afschrift

Thierry Afschrift founded the Afschrift law firm in 1994. He was, at the time, a renowned tax specialist, professor in charge of several courses at the Université Libre de Bruxelles. More importantly, 1994 is also the year he published L’évitement licite de l’impôt et la réalité juridique (lawful tax avoidance and legal reality) at the éditions Larcier. In this book, Thierry Afschrift targets a law from 1993 that reformulates the article 344 of the Code d’Impôt sur les Revenus (income tax code). His core message forms the basis of the values held by the lawyers that joined the Afschrift Law Firm: the taxpayer can never be forced to pay more taxes than what the law prescribes. “The government cannot force a taxpayer, whether a physical person of a legal entity, to place herself in a less favourable situation. Every taxpayer has a right – provided she respects the law – to reduce as much as she can the tax pressure put on her shoulders by the Belgian State. For more than 60 years, successive governments have tried to limit this right, event though it finds its origin in the spirit of the Belgian Constitution. Their attempts have so far been rejected eventually by the Constitutional Court.” The 1993 law, largely useless, has been replaced by a new version in 2012. Thierry Afschrift holds that this version, rechristened disposition anti-abus (anti-abuse provision) by the then Minister of Finances, will face the same constitutional obstacles. “As long as the principle of legality of tax will be enshrined in the Constitution, the legislator will find it very difficult to pretend that a law-abiding citizen could suddenly be deprived of their benefit on the sole reason that he tried to use them to his advantage.”

Firm Overview:

Strength, courage and gentleness

We have chosen the bear as the brand image of our job as tax lawyers for its strength, its courage and its reputation for gentleness.

Energy and courage

Everybody knows that bears are powerful animals, very quick to defend their cubs and their territories against intruders.

As fiscal lawyers, our role is to defend our clients and to protect their assets against the government. We will tackle this with the same energy and courage as a mother bear defending her cubs.

Gentleness and benevolence

But the lawyer also has to advise and provide guidance to his clients so that they can manage their assets and professional activities. We look after our clients with the same care as that of a mother bear supervising the first steps of her baby cubs.

Confidentiality

Finally, the teddy bear is the first friend to whom a small child will confide his secrets, knowing the bear will never betray them.

Inevitably our clients, if they are going to receive advice that is most suitable for their needs, will have to disclose certain details of their private lives. We do everything possible to protect such confidential data.

Protecting bears

To provide a tangible example of our attachment to bears as the emblems of our activity, we have decided to put words into action. That is why we support in Spain the charity “Fundación oso de Asturias” which works for the protection of bears in Asturias.

Thierry Afschrift

Thierry Afschrift founded the Afschrift law firm in 1994. He was, at the time, a renowned tax specialist, professor in charge of several courses at the Université Libre de Bruxelles. More importantly, 1994 is also the year he published L’évitement licite de l’impôt et la réalité juridique (lawful tax avoidance and legal reality) at the éditions Larcier. In this book, Thierry Afschrift targets a law from 1993 that reformulates the article 344 of the Code d’Impôt sur les Revenus (income tax code). His core message forms the basis of the values held by the lawyers that joined the Afschrift Law Firm: the taxpayer can never be forced to pay more taxes than what the law prescribes. “The government cannot force a taxpayer, whether a physical person of a legal entity, to place herself in a less favourable situation. Every taxpayer has a right – provided she respects the law – to reduce as much as she can the tax pressure put on her shoulders by the Belgian State. For more than 60 years, successive governments have tried to limit this right, event though it finds its origin in the spirit of the Belgian Constitution. Their attempts have so far been rejected eventually by the Constitutional Court.” The 1993 law, largely useless, has been replaced by a new version in 2012. Thierry Afschrift holds that this version, rechristened disposition anti-abus (anti-abuse provision) by the then Minister of Finances, will face the same constitutional obstacles. “As long as the principle of legality of tax will be enshrined in the Constitution, the legislator will find it very difficult to pretend that a law-abiding citizen could suddenly be deprived of their benefit on the sole reason that he tried to use them to his advantage.”

Firm Overview:

Strength, courage and gentleness

We have chosen the bear as the brand image of our job as tax lawyers for its strength, its courage and its reputation for gentleness.

Energy and courage

Everybody knows that bears are powerful animals, very quick to defend their cubs and their territories against intruders.

As fiscal lawyers, our role is to defend our clients and to protect their assets against the government. We will tackle this with the same energy and courage as a mother bear defending her cubs.

Gentleness and benevolence

But the lawyer also has to advise and provide guidance to his clients so that they can manage their assets and professional activities. We look after our clients with the same care as that of a mother bear supervising the first steps of her baby cubs.

Confidentiality

Finally, the teddy bear is the first friend to whom a small child will confide his secrets, knowing the bear will never betray them.

Inevitably our clients, if they are going to receive advice that is most suitable for their needs, will have to disclose certain details of their private lives. We do everything possible to protect such confidential data.

Protecting bears

To provide a tangible example of our attachment to bears as the emblems of our activity, we have decided to put words into action. That is why we support in Spain the charity “Fundación oso de Asturias” which works for the protection of bears in Asturias.

Dr. Sylvia Freygner, LL.M.

Sylvia Freygner is our exclusively recommended Competition Law expert in Switzerland on the Advisory Excellence website. If you need assistance in this area, please contact Sylvia directly using the contact details listed above.

Sylvia has been a licensed attorney in Liechtenstein, Austria and Switzerland since 2007 and is an expert in European competition and international tax law. For more than ten years, Dr. Freygner has specialised in trademark law, vertical distribution channels, as well as concession and licensing models. Further, Dr. Freygner focuses on tax arrangements regarding assets, companies and international licensing systems. She also lectures in the Masters Program in International Tax Law at the University of Vaduz.

As a certified expert in fiscal criminal law, Dr. Freygner provides clients with professional and empathetic support in sophisticated and challenging fiscal criminal cases.

For the last five years, Dr. Freygner has led an independent research institute in Vienna that addresses topics related to European competition, liberalisation, and privatisation of state services.

In establishing the first Public Social Responsibility Institute for government services in Europe, Dr. Freygner initiated a new school of thought in the field of European business, competition, and procurement law. The resulting Public Social Responsibility Charta and the Public Social Responsibility Code provides the impetus for a European dialogue with all stakeholders. Furthermore, Dr. Freygner supports the Committee of the Centre of Excellence for the Public Economy, Infrastructure and Public Service e. V. at the University of Leipzig.

In 2017, she completed the Course on Strategic Leadership held by the Austrian Ministry of the Interior.