We have an established track record in advising clients in financial services which include major investment and commercial banks, insurance groups and other corporate clients on how to establish tax-efficient financial services operations. We also advise on structuring and regulatory issue.
Hassans’ expert team of lawyers, headed by Nigel Feetham and Deputy Head, James Lasry, practicing across the full spectrum of financial services offering, has assisted many of the world’s leading companies in the context of their operations and other links to Gibraltar in the last thirty years. Leading the way in the development of Gibraltar’s banking, insurance, funds and investment industries, as well as, more recently, in the context of cryptocurrency and the wider DLT/fintech space (an area of significant growth), Hassans’ financial services lawyers have accumulated considerable expertise and experience, unrivalled in the local legal services market and play a key role in drafting financial services, banking and insurance legislation for the Government of Gibraltar.
Brexit and the future
The Gibraltar Financial Services offering has historically focused on opportunities arising from our membership of the European Union and the passporting of financial services across the single market in the various sectors. The key market for Gibraltar’s financial services is, in respect of 90% of that business, the U.K. In light of the bilateral arrangement between the U.K. and the Government of Gibraltar which ensures uninterrupted and continued single market access to the U.K., Gibraltar’s departure from the European Union on 31st January 2020 had a limited impact on the appeal of the jurisdiction as a centre of excellence in financial services.
Following the departure from the EU in accordance with the terms of a withdrawal agreement, which incorporates an implementation period, it has been business as usual from 1 February 2020. Any significant changes are expected at the end of 2020, although such changes are not yet fully understood given that negotiations are currently ongoing.
Working at the pace demanded by businesses today, we are known for our innovative approach. We work closely with clients to create new products and vehicles and to find unique solutions that suit their business needs. We are also the only firm in Gibraltar that combines specialist derivatives regulation expertise with a substantial banking, tax and securitisation practice.
Our regulatory team sets up and licenses banks in Gibraltar, and provides them with ongoing corporate finance advice on matters such as lending, money-laundering requirements and general banking developments.
We also use our expertise to advise international banks outside Gibraltar on all aspects of their lending to Gibraltar companies. Our investment advice in this area is invaluable as we have both a local and global perspective.
We provide corporate finance advice to leading international finance institutions on major derivative transactions. Our vast experience and knowledge give our institutional clients a competitive advantage that helps them to stand out in their field.
Our financial services team advises clients on every aspect of setting up and running E-Money cards, including obtaining licences, monitoring compliance, drafting contracts, reviewing advertising, structuring shareholdings and liaising with EU member states. These arrangements will remain unaffected during the implementation period.
We set up insurance companies in Gibraltar and take clients through the Financial Services Commission licensing process, from beginning to end. There are now over 60 insurance companies in Gibraltar, many of which we have advised. We are frequently instructed by financial institutions outside Gibraltar that need advice on funding and capitalisations. We are also engaged in advising Gibraltar-based entities on options for establishing operations within the EU single market to continue to avail themselves of access to the single largest market in the world. These solutions potentially include the establishment of operations in Spain, given the convenience and proximity to Gibraltar. Gibraltar is set to become a conduit for business seeking access to the UK but is also, by virtue of it’s location and cultural makeup, able to assist clients requiring EU solutions too.
Investment Services Advice
As with our banking and insurance company clients, we have extensive expertise in setting up and obtaining licences for investment firms in Gibraltar, and providing ongoing advice. Third parties outside Gibraltar also seek our advice when they want to do business with these entities.
We are the leading law firm in Gibraltar advising on securitisation and repackaging.
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