Serge Calame

+41227371000

Serge Calame

Partner, Head Private Clients, Geneva  |  Meyerlustenberger Lachenal (MLL)
JURISDICTION

Switzerland

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Estate disputes
Trust & estate planning
Immigration & relocation

Enhanced Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Settling a very complicated family dispute in relation to a third generation trust involving beneficiaries living in three different jurisdictions and "indelicate" trustees and protectors, whilst negotiating tax rulings with authorities in parallel.

How did you get into private client?

Private client work in Geneva is compulsory!

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Building trust with exclusive clients takes time but the best marketing comes from satisfied clients, so be dedicated, open-minded and imaginative, of course very good at what you do and, perhaps most of all, patient!

What is your favourite quote?

“Please accept my resignation. I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept people like me as a member." Groucho Marx.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Anything in the mountains!

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

Le Coin du Bar, Geneva.

What do you think will be the biggest three challenges in your practice for the next 12 months?

Clearly the first challenge is to maintain a first class quality of services in the present Covid-19 environment. The second challenge is to reach out to the world when we will be able to travel and meet again whilst facing likely new tax initiatives that will most certainly come to light and impact our clients. The last challenge I foresee this year will be to see what dress-code will apply in the new post-Covid and post home office world!

Can you identify any new areas you have developed within your practice to further benefit your clients?

The present crisis has proven that Switzerland is very robust and provides a strong and stable system in the middle of a very shaken Europe. As such, we have been increasingly instructed to assist clients wishing to relocate themselves and/or their businesses in Switzerland, not only for potential tax benefits but also to benefit from the highest standards of healthcare and education.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Make sure you don’t stay virtually connected for too long! Meeting people and visiting countries is the only real way to understand cultures, people and the world we live in and develop the required emotional intelligence and diplomatic skills we need to properly advise sophisticated clients.


Stella Mitchell-Voisin

+41 (0) 22 707 8399

Stella Mitchell-Voisin

Manging Director  |  Summit Trust
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Trust creation, management and administration
Adding value as board director on operating companies
Management of exotic assets

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Exotic Assets
Multi-National Families
Simple Structure

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Pivotal role in unlocking a litigious situation and bringing it to a successful conclusion prior to reaching court, saving significant cost in the process.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

You need to get to grips with the basics properly and then build on those foundations to create enduring client relationships with people who will value your expertise and advice. Spend time getting it right!

What sets you apart from your peers?

A can do attitude that seeks to find commercial solutions to unusual challenges. Stella is an excellent communicator and has strong and enduring relationships with beneficiaries, helping them to navigate issues and understand the choices that they have. Does not shy away from difficult situations or conversations, and tries to keep things simple and understandable.

What is your favourite quote?

“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work & learning from failure.” Colin Powell.


Daniel Martineau

+41 (0) 22 707 8399

Daniel Martineau

Executive Chairman  |  Summit Trust
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

“Complex” trust situations that may involve actual or potential litigation
Trusts owning active businesses
Delivering under pressure

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Exotic Assets
Multi-National Families

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Helping build a very significant Impressionist/Post-Impressionist art collection for a family trust.

What sets you apart from your peers?

Problem solving and delivering difficult news

What is your favourite quote?

Ultra-High-Net Worth Individuals have Ultra High Expectations - Prepare to work hard if you expect to succeed


Xavier Isaac

+41 (0) 22 807 2050

Xavier Isaac

CEO  |  Accuro Fiduciary
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Trust Law
International Taxation
Estate Planning

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Family Office
Multi-National Families

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Assisting UHNW families for Middle East for restructuring family wealth including family assets, real estate, financial asset and art collection.

How did you get into private client?

I spent 25 years in the area of Private Client and Private Wealth Planning in various Leadership role for Banks and Independent trust companies

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Be yourself at your best.
Believe in yourself.
Be fiercely determined in reaching your goals but always remind yourself that you’ve got one reputation.

What is your favourite quote?

“There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world, and that is an idea whose time has come.” Victor Hugo.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Philanthropy via contributing as pro bono Board Members to: Swiss Philanthropy Foundation and Pacific Foundation; Member of "Chevalier du Tastevin"; Mountain activities.

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

Balila Lebanese restaurant.


Kim Grover

+41 22 718 7810

Kim Grover

Director  |  Clermont Trust
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Cross border structuring for high net and ultra high net families, with particular experience where there is a family member and/or assets in the UK and/or US. Managing a family office, coordinating with the various advisors to provide a seamless service with extensive experience investing in private equity investments for trust structures. Managing multi generational structuring, for example, transitioning asset ownership upon the death of a foreign grantor from a US perspective.

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Exotic Assets
Simple Structure

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Providing continued stability to families during the Covid-19 pandemic. Our business efficiently transitioned to staff working from home in all offices with no impact on service levels. Whilst it was not possible to meet clients directly during this time we were still able to onboard new relationships due to our strong business network and our solid internal systems. We have also succeeded in meeting extremely tight transactional deadlines due to our multi- jurisdictional presence allowing us to progress transactions through different time zones.

How did you get into private client?

I am STEP qualified with over 20 years experience in the trust industry working in multiple jurisdictions.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Be interested. Give your best every day and embrace the facts.

What is your favourite quote?

“None of us is as smart as all of us”. At Clermont we have a very strong team and culture- highly qualified staff working towards a common goal, simply to deliver the best service possible to the families that we serve.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

I love to be in nature and therefore sailing, hiking and skiing are my favourite sports of mine. I am an extremely keen traveller when Covid permits! I am also fortunate enough to be godmother to two beautiful young girls and I spend as much time with them as I can.

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

My partner is an excellent Italian cook and so my preferred dining experience is when he makes his homemade tuna tartare, with a good bottle of wine and good company.


Carl Bolduc

Carl Bolduc

Partner  |  CW Partners
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland
UAE
Luxembourg
France
England

RECOMMENDED SPECIALISMS

Exotic Assets
Multi-National Families


Sandrine Giroud

+41 58 105 2000

Sandrine Giroud

Partner  |  Lalive
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Litigation
Art law
Asset recovery & protection

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Successfully defending a private individual against extradition to Russia and being involved in the largest art fraud litigation case ongoing at the moment.

How did you get into private client?

It was a natural inclination towards helping individuals and a taste for art.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

Art, cooking, reading, skiing and hiking.

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

L'Adresse.


Pierre-Jean Faure

+41 22 799 44 03

Pierre-Jean Faure

Partner  |  Gordon S. Blair Switzerland
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

France

TOP 3 AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Trusts and Family structures in a civil law environment
Estate Planning
International tax

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

Monitoring several cross border Family projects involving France, Switzerland and Monaco.
Adjusting ownership structures and governance models to new international regulations.
Educating new generations to sophisticated estate planning.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Be versatile, proactive and humble. Forget about the academic memo or multiple disclaimers: go straight to the point…after having carefully contemplated it!

What is your favourite quote?

“And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good” John Steinbeck


Nicolas Merlino

Nicolas Merlino

Partner  |  Poncet Turrettini
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Succession planning
Asset holding structures

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

The planning and organisation of a succession and estate of one of the most successful Swiss entrepreneurs of his generation, and its post-death implementation.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Concentrate on a bespoke multidisciplinary approach of files (legal/tax/financial).

What is your favourite quote?

"I am not young enough to know everything" – Oscar Wilde


David Wallace Wilson

+41 22 707 8000

David Wallace Wilson

Partner, Private Wealth  |  Schellenberg Wittmer
JURISDICTIONS QUALIFIED IN

Switzerland
United States

TOP AREAS OF EXPERTISE

Personal and estate planning
Succession planning
Dispute resolution

Q&A

What has been the highlight of your practice over the past 12 months?

On the transactional side, the sale purchase of rare and exquisite musical instruments. The area of arts within the private wealth sphere is booming. Selling such rare instruments – from negotiating, to after sale service –is very interesting and an unusual side of the practice.

How did you get into private client?

I was fond of trusts even at university, and started a dedicated website to the topic during my LLM. I knew this was an area of interest in which I wanted to specialize in, and focused on trust, estates and taxation during my LLM. My mentor, who founded this firm, was looking for an associate in private clients, and I was the perfect fit.

What advice would you give rising stars/new lawyers in the private client world?

Stray hungry, stay humble.

What is your favourite quote?

“The more corrupt the republic, the more numerous the laws." Tacitus.

Do you have any outside interests or hobbies?

I am an avid gardener and watcher of the Gardener's World!

When the restaurants reopen, where would you like to go?

A nice, family run, small restaurant called Monte Bianco – just two blocks from our office!