Our Practice Areas
These practice areas are not mutually exclusive though; rather, they are interlinked and mutually reinforcing strategies for dealing with complex and dynamic changes in the legal landscape.
An important aspect of business planning and management entails understanding how government laws, policies and decisions affect the conduct of business. Crucially, businesses would want to understand how to operate within the laws and policies that govern public sector governance with a view to maximizing their commercial opportunities as well as minimizing legal risks.
Our firm is a trusted advisor to a large range of public sector organisations and agencies across every tier of the public sector. We offer legal, regulatory and institutional services to public institutions on the full spectrum of issues ranging from commercial, contracting, property, procurement, compliance and disputes. Our services in this area include:
- Drafting, reviewing and interpreting policies, legislation and regulations
- Dispute resolution and litigation arising out of the exercise of administrative powers by state organs
- Giving legal opinion and advisory on the interpretation and application of the Constitution and statutes to state organs
- Representation before tribunals, commissions and governmental inquiries.
Litigation of commercial and investment matters can be complex, expensive and time-consuming. Arbitration is an alternative to litigation for parties as it results in the resolution of disputes faster, confidentially and in a procedurally flexible manner.
Our team of dispute resolution specialists regularly act in international and domestic commercial arbitration across an array of sectors. Our services cover the gamut of the arbitration process including:
- Negotiating and drafting of arbitration clauses as well as advising clients on all aspects of alternative dispute resolution
- Appearing as advocates in arbitration proceedings
- Enforcement of arbitration awards and challenge of arbitration awards.
The business world is dynamic, fast-evolving and complex. It is also amenable to changing complex policy, legal and regulatory environment. Yet, running a business and keeping abreast of relevant laws for an industry can be onerous and time-consuming. Our firm is here to assist businesses in complying with all laws and also give effect to the legal arrangements needed to achieve their commercial objectives.
We counsel businesses on all facets and phases of their life, from concept and start-up, through growth and expansion, right through to restructuring, sale or winding up. Our expertise and service span the full spectrum of business law and transactions including:
- Formation and registration of, among others, companies and partnerships
- Drafting, negotiating, reviewing and revising contracts such as joint venture agreements, shareholders agreements, and share purchase agreements
- Formation, registration, restructuring, reconstruction and amalgamation and dissolution of legal entities
- Regulation and compliance such as filing annual returns, tax exemptions and tax
- Formation of subsidiaries and branches of foreign companies and international NGOs
- Criminal liability of companies and directors.
Globally, competition laws are constantly changing to respond to the ever-evolving business environment. However, running a business while keeping abreast of changing policies and laws can be onerous and time-consuming.
Our firm is here to assist clients to comply with all competition laws to maximise their commercial opportunities and minimise legal risks by offering practical advice and solutions to challenges they face. Our services cover the gamut of the competition policy and law including:
- Providing practical advice and responding to specific inquiries on a broad range of completion law issues
- Competition law applications and filings
- Drafting and reviewing varied agreements/contracts to ensure compliance with competition law
- Preparing and reviewing compliance policies and procedures.
Law enforcement bodies such as the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, the Assets Recovery Agency, and regulators such as the Competition Authority of Kenya and Anti-counterfeit Agency are aggressively pursuing those suspected of regulatory breaches and crimes such as bribery and corruption, fraud, cybercrimes, money laundering, economic crimes.
A criminal or regulatory investigation, prosecution and conviction can inflict massive financial and reputational damage on businesses and individuals. Investigations require proactive, swift and decisive legal action and advice, whether preventative or reactive, so as to minimize legal risks and mitigate damage to reputation.
Our firm helps clients navigate this complex legal, regulatory, and institutional landscape. Our suite of services encompasses the criminal law, investigations and enforcement landscape and includes:
- Representation in criminal proceedings
- Search warrants
- Assets confiscation and forfeiture
- Advising on extraditions and foreign criminal investigations
- Negotiating mutually beneficial and satisfactory outcomes with prosecutors and regulators.
The Firm has extensive experience representing clients in a wide range of disputes involving complex, high-stakes and sensitive matters. Our experience covers the gamut of law subjects including commercial contracts, construction and engineering, constitution and administrative, criminal law and enforcement, extradition, customs and international trade, debt recovery, defamation, employment and labour, franchises, judicial review, intellectual property, international criminal law, procurement and government contracting, taxation, elections and political parties, and insurance.
Our services include:
- Giving advice to clients on the law relating to their case and on strategy
- Drafting and filing the necessary legal document(s) and appearing and arguing cases before arbitrators, courts, tribunals and quasi-judicial bodies [for instance, Commissions of Inquiry] when disputes progress to formal proceedings
Elections are core to our democracy, giving expression to citizens’ sovereignty. Election laws affect many political parties, individuals and government entities, and implicate several intertwined and related laws, namely, the Political Parties Act, the Elections Act, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Act, the Election Campaign Financing Act, and the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
In 2018, the firm was appointed to represent the President in Raila Amolo Odinga & another v Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission & 2 others. Aside from the President, we have represented several Members of the County Assemblies, members of parliament and governors.
We provide counsel to candidates, political parties and government agencies in all aspects of elections activity including:
- Formation and registration of political parties
- Policy-making and law-making, compliance and regulation
- Dispute resolution in relation to, among others, disputes arising from the nomination of candidates, and disputes relating to the violations of the Code of Electoral Conduct and the Political Parties Code of Conduct.
Employees are the central cog for the success of an organization. There is a growing awareness among employees and employers of the various rights and obligations found in employment agreements.
The law around the employer-employee relationship is ever-changing and complex. Keeping current with the law simultaneously with managing organizational affairs in an optimal manner can be quite onerous. We assist clients on the full range of employment, human resources and workplace matters from transactional and advisory work to dispute resolution. Our services comprise of, among others:
- Giving advisory and legal opinion on varied matters, among them, redundancy, dismissal, disciplinary issues, personal grievances and disputes, and the right agreement to engage workers, whether as employees or independent contractors
- Interpreting, negotiating and drafting employment contracts, agreements and policies
- Preparing and reviewing human resource policies and procedures
- Counselling on compliance with privacy and human rights legislation
- Advising and counselling on all aspects of Kenya's employment and labour laws
- Cross-border labour law and the legal position of experts.
Kenya has and continues embarking on massive building, upgrading and extension of the country’s infrastructure. The development of efficient infrastructure is a catalyst for a country’s prosperity.
We work with public and private sector clients across various infrastructures from roads, railways, airports, water lines and power lines. Our expertise spans all aspects of each phase in a project's lifecycle - from strategic conception and inception to completion and divestment. Our services include
- Drafting, reviewing and negotiating appropriate forms of contract (including standard forms) and associated sub-contracts
- Undertaking transaction and project due diligence, and applying for and obtaining regulatory approvals required under the law
- Advising and counselling on compliance with laws that may impact projects including taxation, competition and government procurement and contracting
- Handling construction and engineering disputes through arbitration, litigation and mediation as well as other forms of alternative dispute resolution
- Drafting and reviewing procurement documentation (including advertisements, tenders, award criteria, evaluation methodologies and scoring guidelines), and contract award notices.
The meaning and boundaries of financial services is notoriously difficult to pin down. Financial services is a catchall name for an assortment of institutions that offer avenues for people to save for the future, acquire and organize capital for consumption and capital for investment. It includes banks, retirement schemes, cooperative societies, insurance companies, retail banks, savings banks, investment banks, and capital markets.
We represent players in the financial services sector on the full range of legal services that include tax, enforcement and compliance, conveyancing and real estate, dispute resolution and litigation.
The practice advises financial industry clients on credit & security documentation, project finance, asset finance, Kenya and international regulatory and compliance issues, enforcement matters, capital markets activities, and new product development. Our areas of expertise include:
- Formation and licensing of financial services businesses
- Due diligence, regulatory and compliance
- Drafting and reviewing legal documents
- Legal advisory and legal opinions
- Credit and security documentation
As globalization has expanded, cross-border legal, regulatory and institutional issues have become topics of significant interest among firms and individuals pursuing business strategies in different countries. As business has globalized and cross-border transactions have become more complex, the ability to provide appropriate counsel across jurisdictions becomes all the more important.
To meet the needs of clients pursuing business strategies in Kenya, our firm has developed expertise in key facets of international trade and investments including regulatory, dispute resolution, taxation and transactional and corporate law. We offer a range of services across the full spectrum of cross-border trade and investments including:
- Setting up businesses and organizations in Kenya
- Corporate compliance and company secretarial services for international clients
- Inward investment and establishment of business operations and related structures in and through Kenya
- Employment of international staff
- import and exports procedures
- Due diligence, regulatory and compliance approvals
Information, communication, technology, and other technology-centred products are a salient feature in modern business activities and are indispensable for business procedures, processes and systems. However, the use and deployment of technology spawns legal risks and creates legal challenges for businesses. For instance, technological advances outpace current policies and regulations.
We assist businesses and organisations to embrace emerging technologies while navigating the rapidly evolving legal, policy and regulatory landscape. Our legal services for the sector encompass:
- Drafting, reviewing and negotiating service agreements, equipment purchases, licensing agreements and other related contracts
- Advising and counselling on compliance with laws that may impact bringing new and emerging technologies to market
- Offering policy advice and advocacy involving emerging technologies to a wide range of clients
- Handling disputes through arbitration, litigation and mediation as well as other forms of alternative dispute resolution
- Assisting clients in dealings with regulators such as the Communications Authority of Kenya
We assist clients to navigate varied legal and regulatory issues affecting the operations of the investment funds (for instance unit trusts and collective investment schemes) and private equity (for instance, venture capital and leveraged buyouts). We counsel in a broad range of aspects of investment funds among them:
- Fund establishment, structuring, regulatory, compliance, and tax
- Negotiating and drafting varied agreements, among them, investment advisory agreements, custody agreements, administration agreements, and co-investment agreements
- Counselling on fund management, governance, and ongoing operations, strategic, transactional, and regulatory compliance
- Handling cross-cutting and general matters of relevance to investment funds including tax, employment, due diligence and intellectual property.
Our firm is one of the very few in Kenya that specializes in the practice of International Criminal Law and has prosecuted and defended cases at international criminal courts involving allegations of genocide and crimes against humanity.
Our lawyers have worked on cases involving alleged international crimes committed in Kenya and Rwanda and represented clients at the International Criminal Court, the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the UN Special Court for Sierra Leone. We are uniquely placed to assist in all aspects of criminal law and our services such as legal representation, and extradition to and from Kenya under bilateral, regional, and international agreements.
The expertise spans the gamut of international law including international trade agreements (specifically East Africa Community Treaty and Economic Partnership Agreements), bilateral agreements (bilateral investment treaties and double tax agreements), investor-state arbitration in bilateral investment treaties, international human rights and corporate social responsibility, and technical assistance and capacity-building advice on negotiating, designing and implementing trade laws and investment laws.
The Firm’s lawyers have advised the governments of Kenya, the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Burundi and Kosovo, the United Nations, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the World Bank and several Non-Governmental organizations.
The non-profits sector is composed of diverse organizations, among them, NGOs, foundations, trusts, charities, community-based organisations, women’s groups, youth groups and self-help groups, bilateral and multilateral donor agencies, universities, colleges, schools, hospitals, government organizations, religious groups, professional organizations, professional societies and trade associations.
We assist clients to navigate the multiple set of statutory laws governing registration, regulation and governance of the operations of the sector. We counsel in a broad range of aspects of non-profits such as:
- Entity formation and selection
- Governance documents
- General advisory and consulting
- Regulatory compliance
The real estate sector has experienced exponential growth in the last decade and there are no signs of a slowdown. Property developments are transforming the cities’ skylines and landscapes.
Developers, owners, private and institutional investors, corporates and lenders rely on our expertise and experience to navigate the legal, regulatory and institutional architecture of the markets in which they currently or plan to operate. Our lawyers provide our clients with guided assistance through all phases of a transaction or project. We counsel in a broad range of aspects of real estate including acquisitions and dispositions, joint ventures, partnerships and equity investments, leasing, financing including syndicated lending, securitizations and other capital markets transactions, construction contracts, regulatory issues, and conveyancing.
The protection of personal data and information is a key concern for businesses, individuals and organizations. The reason is that failure to understand and meet their legal obligations implicates severe legal, financial and reputational risks, among them fines and criminal liability.
Our goal is to assist clients to minimize risks from data breaches and maximize opportunities. We guide clients through privacy and data protection laws and assist them to navigate the complex landscape of compliance. Our data protection and privacy services include:
- Data security breach preparedness and response
- Privacy and security contract review, drafting and negotiation
- Contributing to consultations with government bodies on legislative developments.
- Data protection and privacy training for board members and senior management.
- Advising on the implementation, or the review, of data audits, data mapping exercises, compliance processes and policies.
Government procurements are a daily staple of the news in the country. The reason is that the government is the biggest consumer of goods and services in the economy, cutting across all aspects of public service. Mostly, the government relies on the private sector to supply the goods and services, creating lucrative business openings. In contrast to business transactions, government contracts are governed by laws and institutions which, among others, prescribe punitive sanctions and consequences for suppliers flouting them.
For years, our Firm has assisted clients to navigate the highly regulated and technical issues that regularly arise when doing business with government agencies, departments and ministries.
The Firm offers a full range of services on all facets of government procurement including dispute resolution, investigations and claims, evaluating and implementing internal compliance policies, regulatory and compliance matters, concession agreements and public and private partnerships for the development of public infrastructure.
Public and private enterprises are currently facing a rising tide of regulation and, in the future, could still become subject to new and more government laws and regulations. These could be either domestic or international, including human rights, consumer rights, investors’ rights, anti-corruption laws, and rules on social responsibility. Non-compliance would result in negative results and could adversely affect the business, cash flow, results of operations, financial condition and prospects of the businesses.
Focusing on business activities while keeping current with the ever-evolving regulatory framework can be quite daunting and challenging. We assist clients to comply and adapt to the growing pressure from regulatory bodies while pursuing their commercial interests.
We advise businesses on the full spectrum of regulatory issues spanning several sectors, among them, energy, banks, insurances, telecoms, and NGOs. Our lawyers have built strong relationships with industry regulators, including the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority, Competition Authority of Kenya, Retirement Benefits Authority of Kenya and Insurance Regulatory Authority of Kenya.
Our services in this area include:
- Developing, evaluating and implementing internal compliance policies and procedures to help businesses prevent, detect and respond to violations of regulations
- Guiding and advising clients on setting up and obtaining regulatory approvals and licenses
- Representing clients in regulatory investigations and enforcement proceedings before regulators such as securities exchanges, competition authorities and central bank
- Offering specialist services such as tax audits, due diligence, governance audit and legal audit
- Provide training and writing reports on sustainability and human rights
- Working alongside the regulatory bodies, professional bodies and others to help shape the regulatory frameworks and policies.
Several developments can place a business at risk, leading to financial distress. These include fraud, over-dependence on particular suppliers or customers, weak cash flow, and adverse litigation. Businesses and other stakeholders require advice that minimizes their risks while enhancing the best outcome in difficult situations. Our firm can help businesses facing financial distress at whatever point in the economic cycle.
Lenders, debtors, trustees, board of directors, shareholders, insolvency practitioners and buyers of distressed debt and assets rely on our expertise and experience to navigate the legal, regulatory and institutional architecture of businesses in distress. The scope of our work includes:
- debt restructuring and rescheduling
- arrangements and compromises with creditors
- corporate reconstructions
- asset tracing and investigations
- insolvency litigation
- statutory managements and liquidations
- enforcement of security
- formal insolvency procedures
- Debt advisory work.
Legal guidance is indispensable when taking a great idea and turning it into a great business. It assists start-ups to avoid risk and pitfalls of entity formation, corporate governance, contracting, and intellectual property protection to mention but a few.
We counsel new and emerging businesses on all facets and phases of a start-up’s life, from concept and start-up, through growth and expansion, right through to restructuring, sale or winding up. Our lawyers help start-ups get established, build and maintain a workforce, connect to financing sources and strategic partners, and protect their assets. Our services to start-ups include:
- Formation and registration of entities such as companies.
- Preparing governance documents such as a constitution, shareholders’ agreement, and founder vesting documents
- Advising on company or group structuring, contractor arrangements and employee share incentive schemes.
- Drafting and negotiating term sheets, convertible notes, subscription and shareholders’ agreements, venture debt documents and other standard investment documents, along with transaction mechanics (legal due diligence, approvals, and closings).
- Handling cross-cutting and general matters of relevance to start-ups such as employment issues, acquisitions, outsourcing, tax, legal due diligence and intellectual property.
Tax is a complex and technical area that is constantly evolving to respond to the dynamic, complex and ever-changing business environment. Everything seems to be in flux. Ideally, businesses need to be aware of these changes in the tax system, taking advantage of available opportunities, but at the same time complying with all its mandatory requirements. Yet, running a business and keeping abreast of relevant tax laws and developments for individuals and organisations can be onerous and time-consuming.
Our firm is here to assist clients to comply with all tax laws to maximise their commercial opportunities and minimise legal risks by offering practical advice and solutions to the challenges they face. We work with clients at every stage of the business cycle, giving day-to-day advice on business and legal issues, addressing specific transactions, and working on the design and implementation of clients’ strategies and operations. We cover a spectrum of tax laws including Income Tax Act, Value Added Tax Act, Excise Act, East African Customs and Management Act, Tax Procedures Act, Tax Tribunal Act, Stamp Duty Act, the Rating Act and Valuation for Rating Act.
Our breadth of work encompasses, among others:
- Developing litigation strategies and legal representation before Kenya Revenue Authority, the Tax Appeals Tribunal, the Courts and alternative dispute resolution forums.
- Reviewing assessments for accuracy and compliance with the law, drafting and reviewing grounds for objection to assessments, arguing disputed tax positions before Kenya Revenue Authority, and negotiating tax debt including penalties and interest.
- Reviewing pending litigation and other uncertain tax positions, commenting on the adequacy of defence, probability of success and prevention of recurrence.
- Providing practical advice and responding to specific inquiries on a broad range of tax issues.
- Giving independent advice and opinions on the tax aspects of transactions under consideration.