Q3 2018

Latin Lawyer at 20 / 2018 Elite leadership report / Lifetime Achievement Award

This year Latin Lawyer celebrates its 20th anniversary. Two decades ago, the first copies of the Latin Lawyer 250 were distributed in a Caracas hotel convention hall – and the rest is history.

Much has changed since then. With the launch of various new projects – largely fuelled by Latin American firms’ changing attitudes towards marketing – Latin Lawyer is a different animal to the one it once was. And there have been internal changes too over the years. This year, I became editor of Latin Lawyer, a role I am very much looking forward to exploring.

As the brand continues to evolve, what we hope has endured is the strength of our relationship with the Latin American legal community. It is a source of great pride to everyone at Latin Lawyer that many of you have fond memories of working with us over the years. None of what we do would be possible without the support and attention of our readers, for which we are very thankful.

To chart some of the most striking transformations that the Latin American legal market has undergone in the past 20 years, we asked leading members of the profession to recount their personal experiences of the key changes that have shaped their practices.

Latin Lawyer’s longevity has afforded us perspective to recognise the leading firms in the market. We assembled partners from Latin Lawyer Elite firms at a meeting in São Paulo to discuss the critical issues facing market leaders today.
In this issue, we also speak to Marcela Hughes, winner of our Lifetime Achievement Award; consider the risk US sanctions pose to Latin American companies amid a potential rise in enforcement activity; and think about partner retirement.

  1. Latin Lawyer at 20

    Latin Lawyer celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2018. In the first of two articles marking the occasion, we take a look at its early days, and chart how marketing became a requisite for many Latin American firms’ success.

  2. Paradigm shifts

    To celebrate Latin Lawyer's 20th anniversary, we asked leading members of the profession to chart the standout themes in the evolution of Latin America’s legal market over the past two decades.

  3. Latin Lawyer Elite: 2018 leadership report

    Critical issues as discussed by Latin America's top law firm leaders

  4. Nostalgia is not a strategy

    If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change. So wrote Sicilian author Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa in his most famous work, The Leopard. With the legal industry in a state of flux, today’s law firm leaders would do well to consider the tale of fictional Sicilian nobleman Don Fabrizio Corbera and his struggle to survive in the face of intense social change, says lawyer and law firm consultant Bruce MacEwen.

  5. How am I doing?

    By seeking client feedback, law firms can significantly improve their performance, but only if they act on their findings, says Bruce MacEwen, who chaired a panel on client satisfaction.

  6. Fit for purpose?

    The partnership is the pinnacle of the traditional law firm pyramid, but as lateral hires become more frequent, and millennials show a lack of interest in the partner role, Fernando Peláez-Pier led a discussion that asked whether it’s time for a rethink.

  7. A new route to the top

    Law firm strategy is more likely to succeed if it is backed by a culture empowering employees to carry it out. Jaime Fernández Madero led a discussion about whether new cultures emphasising collaboration and learning are a reality or just wishful thinking.

  8. Lifetime Achievement Award: Marcela Hughes

    The only woman to lead a full-service law firm in Uruguay, dealmaker Marcela Hughes combined her top-rate M&A practice with a humanist management style. We speak to this year’s winner of Latin Lawyer’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

  9. Risky business

    Miller & Chevalier members Brian Fleming and Alejandra Montenegro Almonte detail the growing US sanctions risk for Latin American companies.

  10. The retirement dilemma

    Tony Williams of Jomati Consultants considers how firms and their partners can avoid a messy fallout when it comes to partner retirement.