Practice Areas

Dispute resolution and arbitration


We support our clients in highly complex disputes, critical to their businesses and reputations. We are consistently involved in the most sophisticated and sensitive Portuguese and international disputes.

Our litigation and arbitration practice is made up of five specialist teams, each with consolidated experience in a wide variety of disputes, both in terms of the nature of those disputes and the business area, industry or branch of activity.

We act in the largest banking disputes, involving mis-selling of derivatives and other financial instruments, or responsibility for issuing prospectuses for public offers of securities. Our experience includes representing directors of financial institutions and listed companies in directors’ civil liability disputes and in disputes involving D&O insurance. We also act for our clients in the most significant corporate disputes, often implementing strategies for step-in and for reorganisation of the shareholder structure.

We provide legal support to our clients in defending class actions, especially representing large Portuguese and multinational companies. Our team has represented clients in defending the most important class actions, including actions involving liability for issuing prospectuses for public offers of securities, liability of directors of listed companies and manufacturers’ civil liability.

We have extensive experience representing clients in competition and regulatory proceedings before the Court of Regulation, Supervision and Competition. Our multidisciplinary approach allows us to have a team of specialists that combines knowledge in areas such as competition, banking, finance and capital markets, with a solid experience in litigation.

In the area of civil and commercial litigation, we act in disputes arising from distribution and agency agreements, and disputes involving maritime law. Our team regularly represents a number of car manufacturers in large-scale domestic and cross-border disputes arising from relationships with their dealers and with consumers. We also have experience in pharmaceutical sector litigation, at all stages of the economic process, and in disputes arising from contracts for public and private works.

In the area of restructuring and insolvency, we act in preventive corporate recovery proceedings (PER and SIREVE) and in insolvency and business reorganisations. Our team represents the creditors in a dominant position in the proceedings and the insolvent estates of large Portuguese and multinational companies. Our experience includes preparing and negotiating recovery and liquidation plans, and then dealing with their implementation. We also support our clients in the processes to classify insolvencies as culpable and to claw back assets in favour of the insolvent estate. Our team is called on regularly to act in cross-border insolvency cases and to advise large companies or international financial institutions on defining and implementing business strategies in corporate recovery or insolvency scenarios.

We are the only Portuguese firm with a specialised team exclusively dedicated to arbitration. We represent our clients in the most complex commercial arbitrations, in Portugal and internationally, under the rules of arbitration of the leading arbitration centres, including the ICC, LCIA, CAM-CCBC and CAC-CCIP. Our team has experience in dealing with arbitrations in Portugal and abroad, conducted in Portuguese, English, French or Spanish. It is common for us to put together specific, multidisciplinary and even multi-location teams, depending on the nature of the litigation and the needs of our clients.

Our team has particular experience in:

  1. Banking litigation (including disputes arising out of the banker-customer relationship)
  2. Commercial and contractual litigation
  3. Litigation relating to real estate and hotels
  4. Professional liability (including liability for loss of chance)
  5. Intellectual property and data protection
  6. Leasing
  7. Debt recovery


They provide outstanding work, attitude, accuracy, confidence and they have great offices. We’re very pleased with PLMJ’s work. Whenever we give them an assignment we trust they will do their very best to defend us in strict legal terms, but above all with creativeness and out-of-the-box solutions. It’s difficult to improve when you are above average.
Chambers Europe
2020 Restructuring & Insolvency Recommended Tier 1

"Clients highlight that "the lawyers are technically very competent and work in big teams, which allows for specialised knowledge in insolvency and corporate litigation, as well as fast response capabilities."

2020 Arbitration Recommended Tier 1

"PLMJ's responsiveness is outstanding and the firm is able to adapt the team structure in a flexible manner."

2019 Litigation Recommended Tier 1

"Clients recommend the department for its full coverage of dispute resolution, reporting it to be a "multidisciplinary and dedicated team.""

2019 Arbitration Recommended Tier 1

"Clients praise the provision of clearly structured and well-founded advice, even at short notice"

2019 Restructuring & Insolvency Recommended Tier 1

"Top-tier department boasting valuable experience in multi-jurisdictional restructuring and insolvency cases."

2018 Litigation Recommended Tier 1

"Sources recommend the team for the high quality of service: a very reliable support, reactive and present when anticipating each situation."

2017 Litigation Recommended Tier 1

"Sources recommend the team for the high quality of service: a very reliable support, reactive and present when anticipating each situation."

Chambers Global
2020 Litigation Recommended Tier 1
2020 Arbitration Recommended Tier 1
2019 Litigation Recommended Tier 1
2018 Litigation Recommended Tier 1
2017 Litigation Recommended Tier 1
The Legal 500
2019 Litigation and Dispute Resolution Recommended Tier 1
2018 Litigation and Dispute Resolution Recommended Tier 1
2017 Litigation and Dispute Resolution Recommended Tier 1
Who's Who Legal
2019 Arbitration Thought Leaders

"WWL Thought Leaders - Arbitration 2019 brings together the insight, expertise and wisdom of some of the world’s foremost arbitrators, counsel and expert witnesses in a single book, featuring Q&As with practitioners with millennia of years of combined experience in arbitration between them. The featured individuals obtained the biggest number of nominations from peers, corporate counsel and other market sources in our most recent research cycle."

2019 Arbitration Future Leaders

"WWL Arbitration - Future Leaders showcases partners and non-partners aged 45 or under who are considered to be the future leaders of the international arbitration community.

2019 Arbitration Global Leaders

"WWL and GAR's research identifies the world's best arbitration lawyers, who come highly recommended for their expertise in resolving complex international disputes."

2019 Restructuring & Insolvency Global Leaders
Best Lawyers
2019 Insolvency and Reorganization Law Law Firm of the Year

"Filipa Cotta of PLMJ is celebrating both her firm’s 2019 “Law Firm of the Year” award for Insolvency and Reorganization Law in Portugal, and its recent 50th anniversary as a major player in the Portuguese market. Cotta speaks with Best Lawyers CEO Phillip Greer about changes in her insolvency practice, and what the firm has planned for the future."

2018 Arbitration Lawyer of the year
2018 Recognised Lawyers
2018 Litigations Best Portuguese Lawyer of the year
2017 Other Recommended Lawyer Other Recommended Lawyer
2016 Litigation Law Firm of the Year
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