Benchmark Litigation Asia Pacific (2023)

Assegaf Hamzah & Partners (Indonesia)

Commercial and Transactions – Tier 1
Insolvency – Tier 1
Intellectual Property – Tier 2
Labor and Employment – Tier 1

Leading Lawyers:
Ahmad Maulana, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions, Labor and employment)
Asep Ridwan, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Chandra Hamzah, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Eri Hertiawan, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Yogi Marsono, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Simon Barrie Sasmoyo, Future Star ( Commercial and transactions)

Assegaf Hamzah & Partners continues to dominate with the largest corporate litigation team in the country and maintains its market-leading presence in dispute resolution. This year, the firm climbs into the top tier for its contentious labour expertise and moves up one rank for its IP litigation strength. Its partners not only regularly feature in landmark home-grown matters but also in unique cross-border work. For example, it is the only Indonesian law firm whose advocates have appeared before the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland, where it successfully represented the Indonesian Sporthouse Society against the Indonesian Olympic Committee. The firm is part of the Rajah & Tann Asia network.

The disputes team is experienced in both civil and criminal cases across all industry sectors, and has a successful alternative dispute resolution practice. In particular, the firm specialises in aviation, labour and employment, intellectual property, insolvency, and tax and customs disputes.

The firm boasts nationally and internationally qualified mediators and arbitrators, making its alternative dispute resolution offering a go-to for top-end clients. Notably, the firm has an established fraud and forensics investigations practice.

The firm’s co-founder, Chandra Hamzah, and partner Eri Hertiawan co-lead the disputes group. Other key individuals are partners Yogi Sudrajat Marsono, Asep Ridwan and employment expert Ahmad Maulana.

The firm successfully defended Tokopedia in a civil lawsuit regarding data privacy and consumer protection before the District Court and is currently waiting for a decision from the Appeal Court. The team is representing Antam in a case challenging its special mining licence for the exploration of an area in north Bahodopi. It’s also busy defending Indonesia AirAsia Extra against a civil claim brought by four customers. The team continues to work with Garuda Indonesia on its debt and business restructuring, as well as on its lawsuit against Rolls Royce and its subsidiary over the cancellation of a total care agreement valued at $43 million.

On the antitrust front, the firm is representing Salam Pacific Indonesia Lines before the Supreme Court in a defence against the KPPU’s decision on price fixing. Maulana and his team are acting for an investment management company in an ongoing dispute with its ex-director.

Client feedback
“They handled everything professionally, from preparation of response, demurrer and cross-examination to the post-hearing brief.” – Commercial and transactions

Simon Barrie Sasmoyo
“He handled the team and the preparation of the submission professionally and knowledgeably.”


Christopher & Lee Ong (Malaysia)

Commercial & Transactions - Tier 3
Competition/Antitrust - Recommended
Construction - Tier 3
Intellectual Property - Tier 2
Labor and Employment - Tier 3
Shipping - Highly Recommended

Leading Lawyers:
John Mathew, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Sri Sarguna Raj, Litigation Star (Intellectual property)

Best known for its competition and shipping expertise, Christopher & Lee Ong also delivers a consistent and respected dispute resolution offering across all major corporate and commercial practice areas and industries. The sizeable team sits at 13 partners with specialties in banking litigation, corporate commercial disputes, construction disputes and adjudication, employment conflicts, shipping disputes and contentious insolvency matters. The firm enjoys strong relationships with the country’s regulators and is part of the Rajah & Tann network.

Key contacts for disputes related work are commercial litigation partner John Mathew and intellectual property specialist Sri Sarguna Raj.

In commercial and transactions, the firm is representing FGV Prodata Systems (Prodata), a subsidiary of FGV Holdings, in defending a suit initiated by VDSL Technology for breach of contract arising from the Felda Broadband Initiative Project. The firm has filed in the defence of Prodata in resisting the purported claim of VDSL and contended that there was no concluded contract between VDSL and Prodata in respect of the implementation of the project. Another commercial dispute sees the firm acting for the Siemens entities in respect of a claim filed in the Kuala Lumpur High Court by Bank Kerjasama Rakyat Malaysia.

The firm’s recent client roster includes CIMB Bank, Kuwait Finance House, Malayan Banking and PAE National Security Solutions.


Gatmaytan Yap Patacsil Gutierrez & Protacio (C&G Law) (Philippines)

Commercial & Transactions - Tier 2
Government and Regulatory - Other Notable Firms
International Arbitration - Recommended
Labor and Employment - Tier 2
Tax - Other Notable Firms

Leading Lawyers:
Anthony Mark Gutierrez, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions, Tax)
Ben Dominic Yap, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions, International arbitration)

Gatmaytan Yap Patacsil Gutierrez & Protacio (C&G Law) – a member firm of Rajah & Tann Asia – has a strong domestic and international arbitration practice. The firm’s litigation experience covers a diverse range of subjects, such as contractual disputes, product liability, tax and enforcement of foreign judgments and arbitral awards.

Ben Dominic Yap, managing partner of the firm, specialises in litigation and arbitration with expertise in corporate and energy matters. Other key contacts include Jesus Paolo Protacio – a specialist in civil and commercial litigation as well as labour, criminal and general disputes – and tax specialist Anthony Mark Gutierrez.

In an ongoing commercial dispute, the firm is representing Standard Chartered Bank in its $20 million claim against Philippine Guarantee Corporation. The claim arises from the defendant’s failure to honour its obligations under a guaranteed agreement pursuant to which it secured a $90 million loan facility extended by Standard Chartered Bank (and three other banks) to Philippine Phosphate Fertilizer Corporation, which later defaulted due to insolvency. The firm obtained a favourable judgment awarding more than $18 million to the bank and the judgment is currently under appeal.

Another notable dispute sees the team representing Metro Rail Transit Corporation in various cases against several local government units involving the taxability of the EDSA Light Rail Transit System. The outcome of this case will affect ownership and possession of the EDSA Light Right Transit System and could have significant consequences for the entire country.

In government and regulatory, the team, led by partners Gutierrez and Sophia P Inoturan, is representing a wholly owned subsidiary of one of the leading companies in the Philippine power industry. The case is in respect to real property taxes assessed against the company’s powerplant’s pollution control equipment, including the first coal dome built in the country, at a cost of around $20 million to build, with real property tax due thereon amounting to around $9 million from 2016 to date.

Gutierrez is also leading another government and regulatory-related case where his team represents TeaM Energy in defending the president of the Philippines’ executive orders to reduce real property tax of independent power producers (IPPs). This is the first time that a president’s executive orders to reduce real property tax and condoning interest are being challenged before the courts. The court’s decision in this case may affect the real property tax liabilities of other IPPs operating within the country and, possibly, the price of electricity in the country.

Marcventures Mining and Development Corporation, Robinsons Land Corporation and SM Prime Holdings worked with the firm in the past 12 months.

Client feedback
“We are extremely satisfied with C&G Law’s services. C&G Law is very dependable, and they are always available to address our concerns. They have been very responsive and proactive, and their team is well staffed and well trained. Their client service is outstanding. They certainly have commercial awareness and offer practical but legal solutions to issues. We derive excellent value for money from them.” – Energy

Vladi Miguel Lazaro
“He responds to our questions and requests in a timely manner even at short notice, and is very thorough. He is very reliable and has extensive experience and a mastery of Philippine law.”


Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP (Singapore)

Commercial & Transactions - Tier 1
Construction - Tier 2
Family & Matrimonial - Tier 2
Insolvency - Tier 1
Intellectual Property - Tier 2
International Arbitration (Domestic) - Tier 1
Labor and Employment - Tier 1
Private Client - Highly Recommended
Shipping - Tier 1
White Collar Crime - Highly Recommended

Leading Lawyers:
Adrian Wong, Litigation Star (International arbitration, Commercial and transactions)
Andre Yeap, Litigation Star (International arbitration, Commercial and transactions)
Chua Beng Chye, Litigation Star (Insolvency)
Elaine Tay, Litigation Star (Insurance)
Francis Xavier, Litigation Star (International arbitration, Commercial and transactions)
Hamidul Haq, Litigation Star (White collar crime)
Jonathan Yuen, Litigation Star (Labor and employment)
Kee Lay Lian, Litigation Star, Top 100 Women in Litigation (Private client, Family and matrimonial)
Kelvin Poon, Litigation Star (International Arbitration)
Kendall Tan, Litigation Star (Shipping)
Lau Kok Keng, Litigation Star (Intellectual property)
Lee Eng Beng, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions, Insolvency)
Leong Kah Wah, Litigation Star (Shipping)
Murali Pillai, Litigation Star (Labor and employment)
Patrick Ang, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions, Insolvency)
Sheila Ng, Future Star (Insolvency)
Sim Kwan Kiat, Litigation Star (Insolvency)
Simon Goh, Litigation Star (Insurance)
Soh Lip San, Litigation Star (Construction, Dispute resolution)
Thong Chee Kun, Litigation Star (White Collar Crime)
Toh Kian Sing, Litigation Star (Shipping)
Vikna Rajah, Litigation Star (Private client)
Vikram Nair, Litigation Star (International Arbitration)
Winston Kwek, Litigation Star (Shipping)

Rajah & Tann is leading full-service law firm with roots in dispute resolution. The firm enjoys a stellar reputation for litigation, with the largest practice in Singapore and Southeast Asia, and it is a go-to choice for many clients in complex, cross-border disputes. The firm has the highest number of senior counsels, with a total of seven in Singapore, which gives it the strongest advocacy power in the region. The court hearing statistics alone reflect the commanding lead the firm has in the market, with the highest number of hearings in 2021, at 564 cases, which is almost double the cases of the next closest competitor. The team also secured the highest number of SICC judgments as of mid-2022, with more than a third of the total. The firm maintains an excellent track record of securing landmark decisions and victories for its clients across a wide range of practice areas. Market watchers commend the firm’s expertise, particularly in sectors such as energy, financial services, shipping and construction. This year, the firm ascends into the top tier in the construction rankings.

Among the firm’s numerous leading lawyers are key senior counsels Eng Beng Lee, Chuan Thye Tan, Andre Yeap and Francis Xavier, and partners Adrian Wong, Vikram Nair, Kelvin Poon, Patrick Ang, Danny Ong and Rebecca Chew, who are known for their work in commercial disputes. Insolvency, international arbitration and shipping specialist Kian Sing Toh is another notable figure alongside IP-focused Kok Keng Lau, construction experts Chee Siong Sim and Lip San Soh, commercial litigation head Chandra Mohan and white-collar crime expert Hamidul Haq.

The Rajah & Tann team was at the helm for Tendcare Medical Group Holdings in the largest successful claim ever for fraudulent trading in Singapore. The case also resulted in the Court of Appeal issuing a landmark judgment appraising the law of reflective loss in the jurisdiction. In another seminal case, the firm is acting in the first civil claim brought in Singapore by an investor against directors for breach of statutory duties under two sections of the Securities and Futures Act. Its clients are the former non-executive independent directors of the managers of Eagle Hospitality Trust.

On the construction front, the team is representing Vim Engineering in an appeal against a High Court decision in a significant dispute involving contractual conditions when making variation claims. The case is of tremendous significance for the industry, and the appellate judgment, when it is issued, is likely to be the locus classicus on a number of issues that are often significant sources of controversy. The issues addressed will include the effect of oral instructions for variations where the construction contract provides for variations to be carried out only on written instructions, the authority of employees to issue instructions on a live construction site, and the effect of provisions in the construction contract regarding the entitlement to levy back charges.

The insolvency litigators are busy assisting Shanghai Huaxin Group on its liquidation. This is a very significant case demonstrating the increased collaboration between the mainland and Hong Kong judicial authorities in relation to insolvency matters. It is the first case where a Hong Kong court has recognised and assisted mainland liquidators. In another marquee matter, the team received the first-ever recognition of Singapore’s moratorium law in a landmark ruling by the High Court of England and Wales involving its client, H&C S Holdings. This groundbreaking decision is a significant development for Singapore’s debt restructuring and insolvency regime. The ruling is positive for debt workouts across different jurisdictions and a boost to Singapore’s ambition to become Asia’s debt restructuring hub.

In a huge, high-value international arbitration case, the firm continues to defend an Indian conglomerate against a $21 billion claim brought by a BVI entity for alleged breaches of non-disclosure agreements. The team additionally represented the Republic of the Philippines in ongoing $15 billion arbitration proceedings before the ICC on claims for breach of contract and estoppel brought by two large multinational oil and gas companies.
On the labour side, the firm successfully acted for Prudential Assurance Company Singapore in a High Court suit against its former group financial services director and PTO Management and Consultancy. The High Court found that the former director was liable to the client for breach of his contractual obligation to act with integrity and honesty. The case arose out of one of the largest mass exoduses of financial advisers in Singapore in recent history.

Key clients include Alfa Bank of Russia, Borrelli Walsh, China Machinery New Energy, Hilton Group, Prudential Assurance, Senda International Capital, Vedanta and World Fuel Services.

Rajah & Tann has a strong regional footprint that makes it adept at multi-jurisdictional dispute resolution, with strategic firm alliances across Southeast Asia that allow it to appear in local courts in China, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Cambodia and Myanmar.

Client feedback
“Concise, technically excellent and commercial advice.” – Commercial and transactions
“The team conducts an in-depth study of the facts, blended with a high level of legal research and extreme professionalism, and practical approach in matters.” – Commercial and transactions
“Fees are reasonable and the response quick.” – Construction
“They are good at strategising and advising how to prepare positions and documentation, and to manoeuvre to maximise our situation in protecting our position against the contractor.” – Construction
“They do well overall. Particularly in preparing strategy to respond to our opponent's attitude, and they are efficient.” – Energy
“Quick turnaround and sound knowledge of the law.” – Insolvency
“Commercially savvy lawyers who are ‘high touch’ with clients.” – Insurance
“Provides legal advice in a timely and well organised manner.” – Insurance
“Takes matters forward without unnecessary bells and whistles.” – International arbitration
“Great practical solutions-focused work.” – Labour and employment
“We appreciate their responsiveness and clarity of advice.” – Labour and employment
“Rajah & Tann Singapore provided clear, coherent and practical advice, liaised with foreign counsels seamlessly, and instead of simply forwarding the advice from foreign counsels to us, they proactively sought clarification from foreign counsels, and also rationalised how the advice received from foreign counsels gels with their own advice.” – Labour and employment
“Gives solid tax advice and structures.” – Tax
“Extreme quality of client service, very technical and in-depth analysis of the client's situation. High quality of opinion provided. Partner in charge, Vikna Rajah, had amazing knowledge.” – Tax
“Rajah & Tann is very good in strategising and advising on how certain events should be portrayed and presented to the police and prosecution.” – White-collar crime

Dedi Affandi Ahmad
“Always tries to understand clients' position and requirements.”
Tze Phern Ang
“Tze Phern was able to deliver clear, coherent and practical legal advice. He was also able to meet all the timelines as promised.”
Josephine Chee
“Josephine knows the law very well and is very realistic in her assessments. She also has a lot of previous, useful experience.”
Kim Beng Ng
“Excellent analytical and strategic advice on how best to position and prepare a defence against potential future disputes. Once a dispute is evident, he’s able to look ahead and provide steps to maximise our position.”
Vikna Rajah
“He’s highly professional and knowledgeable, with Incredible technical insight. He offers perfect client service and is in control of the whole process from explaining to delivering. He provides swift and on-point service.”
Mark Cheng
“Excellent knowledge and strong in communications.”
Lip San Soh
“He is responsive and practical, with a good knowledge of construction law.”
Elaine Tay
“She is a very competent lawyer with good industry knowledge.”
Kelvin Poon
“Good legal knowledge and positive approach.”
Adrian Wong
“Technically excellent, he writes well, is concise, practical and offers a solution.”
“Gets to the point and steers matters towards an efficient resolution.”
Andre Yeap
“He's a no-nonsense lawyer. He would tell us his view and the prospect of our case without sugar-coating it. Thus, he helped us to manage our expectations and decide what strategy to employ.”
Jonathan Yuen
“He’s a problem-solver and understands our business very deeply.”
“Practical and provides clear advice.”


R&T Asia (Thailand) Limited

Commercial & Transactions - Tier 2
Government and regulatory – Tier 3
Intellectual property – Tier 3
Labor and employment - Tier 2
Trade and customs - Tier 1

Leading Lawyers:
Krida Phoonwathu, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)
Nuttaphol Arammuang, Litigation Star (Intellectual Property)
Supawat Srirungruang, Litigation Star (Trade and customs)
Surasak Vajasit, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions)


Rajah & Tann LCT Lawyers (Vietnam)

Commercial & Transactions - Tier 2
Energy and construction - Tier 1
Intellectual Property - Tier 2
International Arbitration - Recommended
Labor and employment - Recommended

Leading Lawyer:
Chau Huy Quang, Litigation Star (Commercial and transactions,Construction)
Logan Leung, Litigation Star (International arbitration)
Vu An Khoa Quach, Future Star (Commercial and transactions)