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Europe Guide

Real Estate — Latvia


COBALT - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Outstanding practice with a full-service real estate offering. Has a solid track record in large-scale real estate development and construction mandates, spanning areas such as residential, renewable energy and retail. Advises on planning, environmental and permitting issues arising from construction projects. Recently particularly active in complex real estate disputes. Popular with domestic and international commercial property developers and investors.

Strengths Interviewees appreciate that the team's pragmatic approach with a client saying it offers "down-to-earth, realistic and useful advice," adding that the lawyers understand not only legal issues but also the business and the thinking of the client.

Work highlights Acted for M257, a company in the Akropolis Group, on the EUR100 million development of the Akropolis retail, entertainment and office centre in Riga, including construction and financing issues.

Continues to represent shopping centre owner Tineo in high-value claims brought by the victims of the Zolitūde tragedy, in which 54 people died under the collapsed roof of a Maxima supermarket in Zolitūde.

Notable practitioners

Managing partner and versatile practitioner Dace Silava-Tomsone has carved out an impressive reputation in the real estate and construction market. She handles high-profile mandates relating to industrial and retail construction projects, as showcased in advice to Latvenergo on contracts for the redevelopment of the Pļaviņu and Ķeguma hydroelectric power plants. She also leads significant disputes mandates on behalf of landowners and construction companies. Interviewees praise her responsiveness and her broad experience.

Guntars Zīle is active in real estate development projects and provides support in acquisitions of real estate. He advised AFI Europe Latvia on a residential project in Riga involving the development of more than 1,400 apartments.

About the Team (content provided by COBALT)

COBALT’s highly experienced and effective real estate team achieves time and cost efficiency in relation to routine matters such as real estate purchase or lease deals, registration arrangements, and obtaining of permits.

Our deep expertise and extensive resources ensure solutions for large-scale cross-border transactions that involve due diligence, ownership and tax planning, as well as financing for asset and share deals.

Our locally unique expertise in the industrial construction projects and in representation in complex real estate disputes (e.g., 25 years of experience acting as counsel in the projects for construction of power plants and handling some of the largest and most high profile construction disputes in the country).

Strong position in advising commercial property developers in Latvia (acting for some of the largest developers on the market: Linstow, AFI Europe, Akropolis, etc.)

Strong government relations practice offering lobbying and legislative drafting capacities unmatched in Latvia.

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Ellex Klavins - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Leading transactional practice with particular strength in real estate asset and share deals, including major cross-border mandates. Offers comprehensive support in real estate projects, from land acquisitions and the negotiation of construction contracts through to eventual divestments. Has significant experience in the office, retail and agricultural sectors. Acts for a diverse client base featuring leading investment funds and corporates from a range of industries. Also advises banks on the sale of real estate-owned properties.

Strengths The team receives strong praise for its transaction management abilities. One client says: "When we face challenges or obstacles to the transaction, the lawyers are responsive to any changes needed," adding they offered creative solutions.

Work highlights Advised IKEA franchisee Paul Mason Properties and Verus Praedium on their acquisition of a number of properties for the development of an IKEA store in Riga, including planning law issues and the tendering of construction contracts.

Notable practitioners

Filips Kļaviņš is dual-qualified in the US and Latvia and is a well-respected figure among peers. He splits his time between fulfilling managerial responsibilities at the firm and leading land acquisition mandates on behalf of key clients.

Ivars Pommers receives praise from clients for his fast and proactive style of work. "He is knowledgeable about the industry and is constantly working and developing within the real estate sector," states one interviewee. Pommers assists foreign investors and Latvian companies with complex acquisition and restructuring matters, including within the context of insolvency situations. He acted for real estate developer Pillar on its EUR7 milllion acquisition of airBaltic's new central headquarters in Riga airport.

Ilga Gudrenika-Krebs assists clients with contentious and non-contentious matters relating to real estate development projects, including the analysis of underlying environmental issues. She also wins praise from peers for her handling of real estate asset transactions.

About the Team (content provided by Ellex Klavins)

The experience of Ellex Klavins Real Estate Group in commercial real estate and construction matters derives from advising on the largest and most complex Baltic transactional, construction and development projects over a long period of time.

Our specialists understand that large-scale projects require a pragmatic business-oriented approach, which is crucial for our clients. We have mastered the local intricacies of law and practice related to real estate, however, we are also able to combine this knowledge with a broad and internationally minded approach. 

Our clients are leading local and international commercial and residential property owners and developers, construction companies (general contractors and subcontractors), financiers and investors, lessees, insurance and surety companies, architects, engineers and suppliers, as well as public sector institutions.

After the merger of Ellex Klavins and Glimstedt & Partners in Latvia, the experienced real estate professionals of both firms have joined forces in a joint group allowing us to strengthen our position in the Latvian legal market even more, share tour knowledge and advise clients on matters in all areas related to real estate.

We cover all the main industry sectors as well as several niche areas, with the key strengths in Latvia, particularly:

  • Real estate transactions;
  • Real estate development and construction;
  • Lease and management;
  • Territory planning and zoning;
  • Environment;
  • Real estate litigation.

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Eversheds Sutherland Bitans - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Outstanding construction practice advising on a range of contentious and non-contentious issues. Often instructed on real estate development and construction projects, including renewable energy or infrastructure mandates. Assists with administrative proceedings relating to unlicensed construction work or the revocation of building permits. Also handles property acquisitions, the negotiation of lease agreements or the structuring of real estate joint ventures. Client base includes port infrastructure operators, real estate developers and local municipalities.

Strengths Sources like the team's creative approach, with a client praising the lawyers' "practical assistance on how issues should be solved," adding: "Sometimes we really need an innovative approach, so I also appreciate how they are able to provide suggestions and solutions."

Interviewees appreciate the business-friendly approach, with a client describing it as "proactive and comprehensive," adding that he also appreciates its "knowledge of the possible risks during and after deals."

Work highlights Acted for RB Rail on the preparation of template agreements to be used in the development of the Rail Baltica project.

Advised MONALD on the development of a multi-functional commercial property in Jūrmala.

Notable practitioners

Ilze Kramiņa has a strong reputation for her expertise in construction matters, including administrative disputes. Clients praise her significant experience and a convincing courtroom manner as well as "a huge working capacity." Another client praises the "talent to make complex legal issues easy to understand."

About the Team (content provided by Eversheds Sutherland Bitans)

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FORT - Real Estate Department

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Band 1

第一等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Widely recognised as an excellent real estate team with a full-service offering. Stands out for its strong track record in construction permitting and planning law disputes. Advises on real estate developments and on significant transactions that are structured either as asset or share deals. Also acts on the buy side of sale-and-leaseback transactions. Client roster includes developers and investors that are active in the retail, logistics and residential sectors.

Strengths Interviewees like the team's responsiveness and ability to attend to urgent matters. "I always have someone to call to and they pick up or call back shortly," a client says.

Clients also appreciate that the team offers several options on how to solve issues.

Work highlights Assisted BIB Real Estate with its appeal against a Riga planning authority's decision relating to construction work carried out on a residential building.

Notable practitioners

Clients and peers alike say Jānis Līkops is one of leading experts in the sphere of real estate and construction. Sources note his extensive experience in the area and also praise his reasonable and clear advice. Recent standout mandates include advising MD CE Holding on its sale of a company that owns a shopping centre in Riga.

Sandis Bērtaitis is a respected litigator with a strong focus on real estate who represents clients in construction disputes. He represented Property Innovators in court proceedings with respect to construction permits for a luxury multi-storey apartment building in a historical centre of Riga. Interviewees highlight his "depth of knowledge" while a client adds: "He's very good in court cases: very eloquent, very tactful."

About the Team (content provided by FORT)

Department profile not yet provided by FORT. Please see their firm profile.

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Sorainen - Real Estate Department

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Band 2

第二等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Strong practice covering the full spectrum of real estate and construction issues. Active in a high number of real estate construction and development projects, especially those involving shopping centres and office buildings. Assists with the design of tender processes in support of public infrastructure projects. Handles sale and purchase agreements, lease matters and disputes. Acts for a range of domestic and international clients, and boasts particular strength in the retail sector.

Strengths Sources identify the team's solution-oriented approach as its crucial advantage, with a source saying: "They actively take on the client’s perspective and look for solutions." While another source notes the lawyers' skill in "explaining all of the ramifications of our decisions."

Work highlights Assisted Rimi with drafting and negotiation of the contract for the installation of cooling and refrigeration systems for the Deglava logistics centre.

Advised Hesburger subsidiary Rigaburger on real estate acquisitions and lease agreements relating to its business in Latvia.

Notable practitioners

Lelde Laviņa earns considerable praise for her advice to local and international investors, developers and construction companies on construction projects. She also handles real estate acquisitions and lease agreements. A client says: "She is very down-to-earth and informal."

About the Team (content provided by Sorainen)

Department profile not yet provided by Sorainen. Please see their firm profile.

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Primus, Attorneys at Law - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Popular choice for domestic clients carrying out real estate acquisitions and negotiating lease contracts. Has experience in construction and development projects, including those relating to energy, residential or logistics assets. Also handles disputes over the non-performance of construction contracts. Client list includes real estate developers, funds and other investors.

Strengths Sources praise the team's client service, saying: "They are supportive and easy to reach."

Work highlights Represented Klaipėdos baldų prekyba in negotiating of a long-term lease agreement for a multi-storey building and adjacent land in central Riga with Elkor group.

Notable practitioners

Kristīne Gaigule-Šāvēja enters the rankings this year as an up-and-coming lawyer due to strong client and peer support. She is known for handling construction, real estate M&A as well as commercial lease agreements. "She always knows how to reach a solution that is acceptable to both sides," a client says.

About the Team (content provided by Primus, Attorneys at Law)

Department profile not yet provided by Primus, Attorneys at Law. Please see their firm profile.

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TGS Baltic - Real Estate Department

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Band 3

第三等

Chambers Commentary (based on the Chambers research)

What the team is known for Notable practice handling a range of contentious and non-contentious matters for regional and Northern European clients. Active in construction-related mandates, with recent work involving energy, infrastructure and shopping centre projects. Advises international retailers on the drafting or termination of lease agreements. Handles property sales or acquisitions in the residential and commercial sectors. Has a broad client list that includes developers, architects and construction companies.

Strengths Interviewees like the team's availability, with a client saying the lawyers are "very responsive, accurate and always engage very deeply in all matters," while another client appreciates the group's ability to "focus on the issues that are really important."

Work highlights Assisted Akropolis Group subsidiary M257 with the construction of the Akropole shopping and office centre.

Advised Prisma Latvia with the termination of lease agreements following its owner's decision to pull out of the Latvian and Lituanian retail markets.

Notable practitioners

Linda Štrause makes a strong positive impression on her clients as someone who is "to the point, clear and fast." She handles a broad range of construction, leasing and real estate transactional mandates. She advised Haascookzemmrich STUDIO2050 on its participation in a public procurement procedure for the creation of a design for a music school in Ventspils.

About the Team (content provided by TGS Baltic)

  • Usually we work for the owners constructing for their own commercial needs, developers, banks and other financing institutions in relation to acquisitions, mortgaging, build-up, division and encumbrance of real property.
  • We assist in negotiating and drafting of various kinds of real estate related transactions – lease, construction and acquisition. We also advise clients on zoning, construction and environmental and other regulatory matters. 
  • Our experience in real estate due diligence and expertise, incl. project compliance control, is exceptional. For example, recently we were engaged by the Latvian state for very specific due diligence to verify, in particular, real property aspects for the natural gas transmission and underground storage system.
  • We are exceptionally strong in real estate dispute resolution. 
  • We have severaral high-profile client-wins over the last year in construction and infrastructure sector (e.g., State Real Estate and Ministry of Finance and the Riga New Theatre, the Ministry of Economics and the unique natural gas transmission and underground storage system, Akropolis Group and its new multifunctional shopping and office centre Akropole, haascookzemmrich STUDIO 2050 for the Ventspils Regional Music School).

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Eminent Practitioner

Filips K Kļaviņš

Ellex Klavins

From the Chambers Europe guide

Filips Kļaviņš is dual-qualified in the US and Latvia and is a well-respected figure among peers. He splits his time between fulfilling managerial responsibilities at the firm and leading land acquisition mandates on behalf of key clients.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 1

FORT

From the Chambers Europe guide

Clients and peers alike say Jānis Līkops is one of leading experts in the sphere of real estate and construction. Sources note his extensive experience in the area and also praise his reasonable and clear advice. Recent standout mandates include advising MD CE Holding on its sale of a company that owns a shopping centre in Riga.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 1

Dace Silava-Tomsone

COBALT

From the Chambers Europe guide

Managing partner and versatile practitioner Dace Silava-Tomsone has carved out an impressive reputation in the real estate and construction market. She handles high-profile mandates relating to industrial and retail construction projects, as showcased in advice to Latvenergo on contracts for the redevelopment of the Pļaviņu and Ķeguma hydroelectric power plants. She also leads significant disputes mandates on behalf of landowners and construction companies. Interviewees praise her responsiveness and her broad experience.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Sandis Bērtaitis

FORT

From the Chambers Europe guide

Sandis Bērtaitis is a respected litigator with a strong focus on real estate who represents clients in construction disputes. He represented Property Innovators in court proceedings with respect to construction permits for a luxury multi-storey apartment building in a historical centre of Riga. Interviewees highlight his "depth of knowledge" while a client adds: "He's very good in court cases: very eloquent, very tactful."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Eversheds Sutherland Bitans

From the Chambers Europe guide

Ilze Kramiņa has a strong reputation for her expertise in construction matters, including administrative disputes. Clients praise her significant experience and a convincing courtroom manner as well as "a huge working capacity." Another client praises the "talent to make complex legal issues easy to understand."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

Ellex Klavins

From the Chambers Europe guide

Ivars Pommers receives praise from clients for his fast and proactive style of work. "He is knowledgeable about the industry and is constantly working and developing within the real estate sector," states one interviewee. Pommers assists foreign investors and Latvian companies with complex acquisition and restructuring matters, including within the context of insolvency situations. He acted for real estate developer Pillar on its EUR7 milllion acquisition of airBaltic's new central headquarters in Riga airport.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 2

AmberLaw

From the Chambers Europe guide

Annija Svemberga of AmberLaw receives recognition from peers for her considerable expertise in real estate issues. She handles both contentious and non-contentious mandates for a broad range of clients.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Ilga Gudrenika-Krebs

Ellex Klavins

From the Chambers Europe guide

Ilga Gudrenika-Krebs assists clients with contentious and non-contentious matters relating to real estate development projects, including the analysis of underlying environmental issues. She also wins praise from peers for her handling of real estate asset transactions.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Sorainen

From the Chambers Europe guide

Lelde Laviņa earns considerable praise for her advice to local and international investors, developers and construction companies on construction projects. She also handles real estate acquisitions and lease agreements. A client says: "She is very down-to-earth and informal."

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

Attorneys at Law 'Skopiņa & Azanda'

From the Chambers Europe guide

Laine Skopiņa of Attorneys at Law 'Skopiņa & Azanda' is highlighted for her long-standing reputation in the real estate market. A client describes her as "fast, creative and experienced." She assisted Modern Times Group with a long-term lease agreement.

^ See whole ranking table

Band 3

COBALT

From the Chambers Europe guide

Guntars Zīle is active in real estate development projects and provides support in acquisitions of real estate. He advised AFI Europe Latvia on a residential project in Riga involving the development of more than 1,400 apartments.

^ See whole ranking table

Up and Coming

Kristīne Gaigule-Šāvēja

Primus, Attorneys at Law

From the Chambers Europe guide

Kristīne Gaigule-Šāvēja enters the rankings this year as an up-and-coming lawyer due to strong client and peer support. She is known for handling construction, real estate M&A as well as commercial lease agreements. "She always knows how to reach a solution that is acceptable to both sides," a client says.

^ See whole ranking table

Up and Coming

TGS Baltic

From the Chambers Europe guide

Linda Štrause makes a strong positive impression on her clients as someone who is "to the point, clear and fast." She handles a broad range of construction, leasing and real estate transactional mandates. She advised Haascookzemmrich STUDIO2050 on its participation in a public procurement procedure for the creation of a design for a music school in Ventspils.

^ See whole ranking table