Insight

Q&A with Florian Schneider, Managing Partner of Dentons Russia

A question and answer session with Florian Schneider, the managing partner of "Law Firm of the Year," Dentons Russia.

Florian Schneider – Dentons Russia
Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers

September 18, 2017 11:21 AM

A question and answer session with Florian Schneider, the managing partner of "Law Firm of the Year," Dentons Russia.

Can you tell me about some of your firm’s recent achievements that you believe contributed to Dentons being named a “Law Firm of the Year”?

Best Lawyers® “Law Firm of the Year” in arbitration and mediation and labor and employment law was not the only title we received this year; we were also named European Law Firm of the Year by Chambers and International Law Firm of the Year by The Lawyer. With so many associations naming us “Law Firm of the Year,” we must be doing something right!

Our global firm was the most awarded firm in 2016. We received 185 awards, if you count all the awards we received globally.

Despite the downturn, we have been expanding our Russian practice, adding the best legal talent to our Moscow and St. Petersburg teams. For example, in the last 12 months we have hired two partners, four counsels, and 12 lawyers in various practice areas.

First, we enlarged the corporate practice, which means we are receiving more work in this area. We also strengthened our tax practice. In fact, we are now the only international law firm able to offer full tax advice from due diligence to international and national tax planning. We founded a customs practice, which is unique among law firms in Russia. One of our lawyers, St. Petersburg Managing Partner Victor Naumov, was the first lawyer to come up with a draft law on artificial intelligence, which is unique worldwide.

Our dispute resolution practice is one of the largest dispute resolution practices in Russia: it has 24 lawyers, including 10 partners. Among them, seven partners are specialized in international arbitration. Considering the wide network of our offices in the CIS, we have a really strong arbitration presence in the region.

The employment and labor practice is very strong and is run by Marina Ryzhkova, who has established a very successful practice in Russia over the last 16 years. In my personal opinion, she’s the leading employment lawyer in the country.

We were very happy to receive so many individual nominations from Best Lawyers. The “Lawyer of the Year” for investment recognition received by Karina Chichkanova, for example, is a great achievement. She is the lawyer who has developed and continues to develop our St. Petersburg real estate practice. Mikhail Ivanov was named “Lawyer of the Year” in arbitration and mediation. Evgenia Teterevkova, who rejoined our firm some time ago, has been recognized for M&A law. Artem Zhavoronkov was recognized for banking and finance work. I think this is much-deserved.

What are some of the pressing issues in Russia right now within the arbitration and mediation law and in the labor and employment law practices?

I think regulation is increasing right now. Of course, the arbitration proceedings reform has radically changed the procedure for the creation and functioning of arbitration courts and international commercial arbitration courts. For example, in corporate litigation and arbitration proceedings a new law effective February 1 says that disputes between shareholders can now be arbitrated in commercial arbitration courts. This is actually something very new: before, they could only be arbitrated in state arbitration courts. So now with the option of commercial arbitration courts, foreign investors can benefit from filing with commercial arbitration courts. Since last year we also have new mandatory pre-arbitration procedures when filing with Russian commercial courts. They are somewhat comparable to the instruments and procedures that you find in other jurisdictions. It is good that we also have them here in Russia now. I think these are the pressing things in arbitration and litigation.

Aside from that, do you find there are other large challenges within either of those practice areas currently?

I think the challenges are from a practical point of view or the management point of view; of course, there are other challenges besides the legal challenges alongside new laws coming into force. We would like to further expand our litigation practice by bringing in a partner in the corporate commercial arbitration and litigation area. But it is hard to find more good litigators on the market. It is also now hard to find really good partners that are also willing to move because everyone is quite busy—which is a good sign.

Are there any changes that you foresee happening in the near future in either of these practice areas, and how do you think your firm will accommodate those changes?

For labor and employment, I think what we feel right now is that in recent times the state has and continues to support the rights of employees in general. This is in connection with the current economic situation, and of course we have to expect that the support will continue. However, there are already employee-friendly labor laws, and we are already helping our clients to optimize their investments when hiring as well as when optimizing their businesses. Even if there are further changes or improvements to employees’ rights, I don’t see this having any effect on our practice. Our practice is very successful and also very specialized in employment litigation and in employment consultancy. Therefore, I don’t foresee any effect on it. We might enlarge our practice because our employment lawyers are very busy.

Regarding arbitration and mediation, I predict that the work will only increase. The challenge that we will face is the increase in work and increase in overseas, state, commercial, and local arbitration. In how we will react, I think we will build up our capacity and even hire new teams or partners in that area and grow. We have to grow because that is what our clients expect from us. They expect us to help represent them in arbitration proceedings; therefore, we will have to build up our capacity in that regard.

Related Articles

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Russia


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Russia

How Russia's Global Policy Is Impacting Mergers and Acquisitions


by Best Lawyers

Alexei Zakharko and Mathieu Fabre-Magnan disscuss how they are preparing for emerging trends in the next couple of years.

An Interview With Dentons Russia

An Interview With ALRUD Law Firm


by Best Lawyers

Russia’s 2020 “Law Firm of the Year” in Labor and Employment Law

An Interview With ALRUD Law Firm

An Overview of Russia


by Anton Novoseltsev

The approval is only required if it is requested by a member of the supervisory board, a member of the executive board, a CEO, or a 1 percent shareholder.

Overview of Russia

Changes in the Legal Regulation of Foreign Investment in Russia


by Artem Zhavoronkov and Oleg Lovtsov

Introducing significant changes in the legal regulation of foreign investment in the Russian Federation.

Foreign Investment Russia

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Germany™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Germany.

Black, red and yellow stripes

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Switzerland™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Switzerland.

Red flag with white cross

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Austria™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Austria.

Red and white stripes

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Italy™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Italy.

Green, white and red stripes

Trending Top Five: Critical Corporate Components for 2022


by Justin Smulison

It’s no longer “business as usual” for most of Corporate America. With a growing list of challenges facing the legal and financial health of many companies, we talked to several major General Counsel about the biggest areas in which businesses should remain vigilant.

Corporate Advice From General Counsel

A Message From Best Lawyers Regarding Ukraine and Russia Listings


by Best Lawyers

Best Lawyers is pausing all research efforts in Ukraine and Russia for 2023.

Ukraine and Russian Research Update

All Doped Up


by Howard Rapke and Sarah Bryden

Keeping elite international sporting events free of banned substances is an endless game of cat and mouse. Here’s an overview of the legal efforts set up to do, in theory, exactly that.

Legal Efforts Against Drugs at Olympics

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers in Colombia™


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers in Colombia™

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers in South Africa™


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms.

Announcing 2022 Best Lawyers in South Africa

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Switzerland


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Switzerl

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Germany


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms, including our inaugural Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch recipients.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Germany

Trending Articles

The Real Camille: An Interview with Johnny Depp’s Lawyer Camille Vasquez


by Rebecca Blackwell

Camille Vasquez, a young lawyer at Brown Rudnick, sat down with Best Lawyers CEO Phillip Greer to talk about her distinguished career, recently being named partner and what comes next for her.

Camille Vasquez in office

Announcing The Best Lawyers in The United Kingdom™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from the United Kingdom.

The Best Lawyers in The United Kingdom 2023

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard: The Best Lawyers Honorees Behind the Litigation


by Gregory Sirico

Best Lawyers takes a look at the recognized legal talent representing Johnny Depp and Amber Heard in their ongoing defamation trial.

Lawyers for Johnny Depp and Amber Heard

Announcing The Best Lawyers in France™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from France.

Blue, white and red strips

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Germany™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Germany.

Black, red and yellow stripes

Education by Trial: Cultivating Legal Expertise in the Courtroom


by Margo Pierce

The intricacies of complex lawsuits require extensive knowledge of the legal precedent. But they also demand a high level of skill in every discipline needed to succeed at trial, such as analyzing technical reports and deposing expert witnesses.

Cultivating Legal Expertise in the Courtroom

Announcing The Best Lawyers in Belgium™ 2023


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms from Belgium.

Black, yellow and red stripes

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers® in the United States


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers listed in the 28th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America® and in the 2nd Edition of Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch in America for 2022.

2022 Best Lawyers Listings for United States

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in France


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms, including our inaugural Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch recipients.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in France

Choosing a Title Company: What a Seller Should Expect


by Roy D. Oppenheim

When it comes to choosing a title company, how much power exactly does a seller have?

Choosing the Title Company As Seller

We Are Women, We Are Fearless


by Deborah S. Chang and Justin Smulison

Athea Trial Lawyers is a female owned and operated law firm specializing in civil litigation, catastrophic energy, wrongful death and product liability.

Athea Trial Law Female Leadership and Success

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Germany


by Best Lawyers

The results include an elite field of top lawyers and firms, including our inaugural Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch recipients.

Announcing the 2022 Best Lawyers™ in Germany

U.K. Introduces Revisions to Right-to-Work Scheme and Immigration Rules


by Gregory Sirico

Right-to-Work Scheme and Immigration Rules in

Destiny Fulfilled


by Sara Collin

Was Angela Reddock-Wright destined to become a lawyer? It sure seems that way. Yet her path was circuitous. This accomplished employment attorney, turned mediator, arbitrator and ADR specialist nonpareil discusses her career, the role of attorneys in society, the new world of post-pandemic work and why new Supreme Court Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson represents the future.

Interview with Lawyer Angela Reddock-Wright

Famous Songs Unprotected by Copyright Could Mean Royalties for Some


by Michael B. Fein

A guide to navigating copyright claims on famous songs.

Can I Sing "Happy Birthday" in Public?

What the Courts Say About Recording in the Classroom


by Christina Henagen Peer and Peter Zawadski

Students and parents are increasingly asking to use audio devices to record what's being said in the classroom. But is it legal? A recent ruling offer gives the answer to a question confusing parents and administrators alike.

Is It Legal for Students to Record Teachers?