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YAV & ASSOCIATES

Cabinet d'Avocats | Law Firm | 律师事务所

PRACTICE AREAS

YAV & ASSOCIATES  is an African law firm with an international client base. Our lawyers endeavour to provide insightful, practical and full legal advice at competitive rates. Our core practice areas include: Dispute Resolution including Litigation, Arbitration and Mediation, Corporate, Business and Commercial Law [OHADA Law], Natural Resources Law, Energy Law, Restructuring and Insolvency Law, Employment Law, Family Law, Banking and Finance Law, Intellectual Property Law,  and Criminal Law.

DOMAINES  DE  PRATIQUE

YAV & ASSOCIATES est un cabinet d'avocats africain avec une clientèle locale et internationale. Nos avocats s'efforcent de fournir des conseils juridiques perspicaces, pratiques et complets à des tarifs compétitifs. Nos principaux domaines de pratique comprennent : le règlement des différends, y compris le contentieux, l'arbitrage et la médiation, le droit des sociétés, des affaires et commercial [Droit OHADA], le droit des ressources naturelles, le droit de l'énergie, le droit de la restructuration et de l'insolvabilité, le droit du travail, le droit de la famille, le droit bancaire et financier, le Droit de la propriété intellectuelle  et droit pénal.

Labor, Employment & Immigration

► The growing importance of human resources and its efficient management is essential to any business. YAV & ASSOCIATES offers legal services in the field of employment, labor and immigration law helping clients to be able to focus on their core values and strength knowing that our experts take care of all legal obligations.


► Clients on both sides of the employer-employee divide turn to YAV & ASSOCIATES for assistance with their employment and human rights law issues in Democratic Republic of Congo.


Employers: Mitigate Your Risk

Managing disparate labour and employment laws and business practices is critical. At YAV & ASSOCIATES LLP our first objective is to help you anticipate – and prevent – legal risks. We mount exceptionally effective defences against damaging disputes whenever they arise. YAV & ASSOCIATES knows what makes your business tick. Whether it's worrying about hiring practices, overtime pay or protecting your intellectual property, our goal is to keep you out of the headlines and let you get on with business. We provide solid representation to employers on workplace issues of employment law, workplace safety and labour relations.

YAV & ASSOCIATES’ advice and activities are also valued by companies and business owners Congo-wide. YAV & ASSOCIATES helps a vast array of employers deal with allegations of discrimination or harassment in the workplace and provides legal guidance and assistance in cases of employee termination. YAV & ASSOCIATES also assists businesses with a wide range of workplace policies, as well as with the development and review of employment contracts. YAV & ASSOCIATES always values practical, ready-to-implement solutions for their clients.


Employees: Protecting Your Rights


YAV & ASSOCIATES LLP represents individuals who have been fired, discriminated against, or are victims of human rights abuses. We advise individuals who have found employment and want advice on their employment contract, benefits or compensation. We counsel employees on enforcement of restrictive covenants and employment contracts in order to maintain appropriate freedom of action. We have extensive experience engaging in negotiations and mediations in order to resolve a variety of workplace disputes, and we pursue litigation when appropriate before the Labour Inspectorate, labour tribunals and the courts in order to achieve the best possible results for our clients. We will advocate for you and find the best outcome for your situation.

Individuals who have suffered discrimination and harassment in the workplace rely on YAV & ASSOCIATES for solutions that put a stop to the offending behaviour and remedies that provide them with proper compensation. YAV & ASSOCIATES also helps ensure that workers who have been wrongly fired or terminated receive fair treatment and compensation where appropriate.


► The lawyers of YAV & ASSOCIATES’ Employment & Labour Law Group have one mission: to resolve workplace conflict in common-sense ways that serve our clients’ financial interests. Employers and employees across the Democratic Republic of Congo rely on us as experienced, cost-effective counsel who consistently prioritize their interests throughout the legal process.


CEOs, HR  and other company personnel keep our employment and labour lawyers on speed dial. They contact us daily for everything from legal advice to strategic guidance on workplace human rights, terminations, disability leave, regulatory compliance, contract negotiations, and a host of other employment and labour law matters.


Employees retain our services as well, often for assistance and advice on issues such as workplace conflict and terminations. 

Increasingly, clients are turning to us for help with occupational health and safety matters, as well as human rights issues related to workplace conduct and terminations. We also provide assistance in emerging employment law fields.

No matter how big or small the matter, we are always accessible to our clients, placing their financial realities and long-term interests first and foremost. For more information about our real-world, common-sense approach to conflict resolution in the workplace, please contact our firm.


► Our employment & immigration team recognizes the importance of human resources and its management as an essential factor for any successful business operation. We work with clients to immediately respond to workplace issues and provide solutions, which are tailored for our clients’ commercial objectives, people strategies and company culture. Our employment experts assist in all employment and labor law related issues. We offer our clients the complete suite of employment law services - strategic development, advice and advocacy. We also have strong litigation experience and regularly represent clients in employment law disputes before the Labour Inspectors and Labour Courts.

► In terms of immigration law, we help local and multinational companies with their successful transfer of human resources across borders. Our legal advisors handle all matters evolving around the transfer, such as support regarding the acquisition of domestic work permits, residency permits and assistance in relation to taxation and fines.

Litigation, Mediation and Arbitration  

► Our  Litigation team combines insightful and thorough legal analysis with a practical approach so we can resolve disputes promptly with minimum disruption.


► Our experience in  litigation and dispute resolution procedures enables our lawyers to deal effectively with disputes in the various courts and tribunals of the DRC and Africa such as CCJA, SADC Tribunal, African court, East Africa court, etc.... We also advise on domestic and international arbitrations and conduct cases before various specialised tribunals and professional associations.


Dispute resolution has become an integral part of our legal practice, bringing together lawyers with different sectoral specialization. Based on the experience and knowledge of our lawyers in the practices of corporate law, banking and finance law, tax law, criminal law, competition law, mining law, energy law, bankruptcy, labor law and intellectual property, we develop and implement effective Litigation strategies for legal disputes of the following categories:

  • debt collection disputes;
  • corporate disputes;
  • tax disputes and disputes on other administrative matters;
  • contractual disputes (sale, rent, lease, etc.);
  • rehabilitation and insolvency;
  • Investment disputes;
  • disputes over intellectual property rights;
  • disputes in real estate and construction.

Meanwhile, YAV & ASSOCIATES  law firm is aimed at achieving a comprehensive outcome: we secure not only a positive decision of the court, but also its enforcement.


► Arbitration has become a popular and widely used method of commercial dispute resolution in DRC and worldwide. Few years ago, our clients and lawyers relied on court litigation to resolve disputes. However, arbitration has gained a real foothold in Africa, and there has been continued growth in the acceptance of arbitration as a viable option for settling disputes, not only between private parties but also disputes involving States. 

Our lawyers are committed to providing clients with creative and result-oriented litigation and arbitration counsel.

Lobbying & Consulting

► Yav & Associates lobbying team is dedicated to offering legal services that are broad, deep and dimensional. 


Our professional experiences include preparing businesses for presentations to state governing bodies, obtaining government approvals for pending projects, assisting in implementing regulations and policies, and lobbying at the legislative and executive agency levels. Our attorneys, consultants and political analysts strive to provide the range of services required to achieve our clients’ objectives in the areas of legislative counsel and consulting, transactional and regulatory insurance law and consulting, and general administrative and regulatory law.


Yav & Associates' mission is to deliver a powerful combination of commitment, charisma and political savvy when it comes to navigating and influencing government. 

In an age of unprecedented government intervention in private industry, Y&A seeks to offer more than just a clear understanding of the state agencies to which businesses are accountable. The firm’s objective is to quickly reach and positively influence the right audience. Collaboration is at the heart of our Government Affairs practice. Y&A attorneys are committed to teaming with consultants and to moving government officials toward our client’s position. The key relationships our attorneys strive to develop over decades of practice help streamline the process and promote the right message to government officials about our clients.


► We represent our clients’ interests on the highest Executive and Legislative levels. We combine legal expertise with lobbying knowledge. This is what sets us apart.


►  With an office in Kinshasa, the epicenter of government affairs in DR.Congo, our attorneys are strategically positioned both at the capital and in our offices across the country especially in the richest towns of Lubumbashi and Kolwezi to monitor legislative and regulatory activities as they occur, as well as work with leaders between sessions when important planning is in motion. Our attorneys seek to maximize their long-term relationships with government representatives in order to highlight possible adverse implications of a proposed bill or to modify current legislation.


► Our lobbying practice is further bolstered by the deep experience of our lawyers, some of whom have held key government positions. 


CONSULTING SERVICES 


As clients face greater risk, competition and technological change, the advice they require increasingly stretches beyond legal know-how. We integrate consulting capabilities into our client engagements, which enables us to provide value-adding business advice to our clients across a wide range of specialist areas.


Our consulting teams complement our legal practices and sector experience enabling us to offer holistic business solutions to clients. Renowned in their respective fields, our consultants benefit from our deep understanding of the law, risk and the regulatory environment, as well as a long history of working with leading in-house legal teams across the world.

Intellectual Property Law

► Intellectual property is a valuable commodity, which should be protected by all means necessary. With the assistance of our IP lawyers, clients can rest assured that their intellectual property matters are professionally managed and get the most from their IP.


► Our dedicated team of legal experts advises domestic and international clients on intellectual property related matters, including trademarks (everything from research to protection and more), patents and industrial design, copyright, as well as assistance in IP related disputes and in different matters arising from transactional work.

► Our lawyers represent clients in their most challenging and complex intellectual property matters in DRC. We prosecute and litigate complex IP matters, advise and assist clients in protecting their intellectual property rights from infringement, counterfeiting, misappropriation or unfair competition.


Our Attorneys specialize on Intellectual Property Rights, as such we provide a broad range of customized services on Trademark, Patent, Copyrights and Industrial Design, that includes, search for registrability, file an application for registration, protection against infringements, defense against objections of Patents, Trademarks, Copyright and Industrial Design.

Further, provide our clients with the post-registration services such as Recordal of Assignment, Licensing, Renewal and Transfer of Intellectual Property Rights, in DR.Congo and across Africa.

Tax and Customs Law

► Taxation is an ever-present factor for every business. A clever and well-structured approach to taxes can help savings. Our tax law advisors have longstanding experience in providing tax advisory and outside general tax counsel to public and private businesses on all tax aspects of their operations in DRC.

Our knowledgeable team of experts offer sound tax advice. Through our multi-disciplinary approach to taxation paired with special industry know-how, we are able to offer tailored tax advice to clients from any industry.


► We provide recommendations for Foreign and domestic companies in terms of their legalities; present them legal advice with regard to taxes and restructuring issues. We provide advice in tax issues for our clients in a wide range of activities with our experienced lawyers.


► In addition to providing consultancy in tax related issues, our dispute resolution unit also represents our clients in large-scale disputes related to tax and customs charges. 


► We advise our clients on all kinds of customs matters, in many cases in coordination with our Trade practice group. Such advice includes regulatory matters, administrative and judicial proceedings, strategic operations, advice on national regulations and international treaties, duty issues and import restrictions.

Corporate,  Commercial & OHADA Law

► In today’s business environment it is invaluable to have a good and solid foundation to build your business upon. In Yav & Associates we advise businesses and companies on their ongoing obligations in a world where businesses are becoming increasingly accountable to all stakeholders.


► As a Full-service Legal Advisory, our Corporate & Commercial team advises clients on the full range of legal services in relation to corporate and commercial matters. Besides general corporate and day-to-day matters like corporate governance, compliance and regulatory matters, support for in-house legal teams, our skilled advisors put special emphasis on company formations, dissolutions, corporate changes, business transfers (including cross-border advice) and contracts. In terms of commercial law, we offer precise legal advice including assistance with  marketing matters, commercial contracts, distribution issues and franchising.

► Clients benefit from our longstanding experience and particular industry insights adding value to their business. Our clients include players from various sectors of the industry; Mining companies, construction , funds, private and institutional investors, energy companies, IT, and media and telecommunications companies.


► The Organization of Business Law In Africa (OHADA) 


  • The DRC has joined the Treaty for Harmonization of Business Law ("OHADA") in Africa. This Treaty gathers 17 countries : Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Benin, Burkina Faso, the Central African Republic, Congo-Brazzaville, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Equatorial Guinea, Comoros, Mali, Niger, Senegal, Chad and Togo.

  • YAV & ASSOCIATES, assists clients with any commercial or corporate legal issue within the OHADA Space. Be it to incorporate a company or for more complex transactions throughout the development of your commercial activities, our team can predict the risks and advise you appropriately thanks to its practical experience on the ground. We can help you put in place commercial contracts, as well as assist you in a context of restructuration or business expansion. We can also guide you during the due diligence process in the context of an acquisition of companies operating within the OHADA Space, whether it involves asset, share or project financing transactions. We will assist you in drafting transactional documents and implementing security documents or other mechanisms to protect your investments. We can also help you obtain certification or administrative authorizations required to complete your activities.
  • Also, the OHADA treaty offers two dispute resolution mechanisms: arbitration or litigation. We can advise you on how to manage OHADA legal disputes.
  • Our team has a comprehensive understanding of the legal constraints specific to OHADA, related to introducing and developing client projects. We can provide strategic counsel tailored to each stage of your project, no matter how complex.

Mining, Energy, Infrastructure Laws

► The  mining, energy and infrastructure industry offers a lot of opportunities in our country and region. However, if projects and transactions are not well-structured and thought through, economic success recedes into the far distance.


► We provide our clients from energy, infrastructure and mining industry with the full range of legal services in this sector, including project development, due diligence, financing, PPP/PFI, real estate and construction, regulatory, environmental, technology, competition and dispute resolution advice. Our team has experience in areas such as renewable energy, power, oil & gas, mining, electricity, infrastructure and utilities.


► Our experience covers transactions involving all major commodities and precious metals, including, copper, cobalt, gold, lithium, silver, zinc, iron ore … We are here to guide you through every stage of the life cycle of a project from exploration to operations to closure. Our legal practice focuses on understanding the commercial and practical sides of your business to ensure we find the best solution. 

Banking and Finance Law

► The banking environment is constantly evolving. Financing solutions are multiplying, and legal implications related to financial products are becoming more complex. Due to the ever changing economic, political, environmental and regulatory worlds, financial markets will continue to challenge us in the years ahead.

We keep track of the developments and help you to navigate the increasingly complex debt and financial markets. We also go a step further - guiding you in identifying opportunities and innovative ways to access the funding most suitable for you, whilst also managing risk. It is our job to stay ahead of these changes for you, allowing you to stay focused on your core business.


► Our lawyers in the practice have considerable specialist knowledge and experience in the sector and draw on a broad skills base to provide innovative solutions to our banking and finance clients and support them in meeting the challenges facing the sector.


► Our clients include commercial banks, non-regulated lenders, insurance companies, financial and institutional investment clients, investment banks, loan servicers, broker-dealers, and Fintech and payment system clients, ranging from global national and regional industry leaders to innovative start-ups, and internet-based providers.

Sports & Gaming Law

► Sports and gaming industries are now an entirely different ballgame, with bigger stakes and new players from across the globe entering the arena. The gambling sector in Congo [Kinshasa and Brazzaville] faces increasing regulatory challenges.


►  At the intersection of interactive gaming and government regulation, one law firm stands out: YAV & ASSOCIATES.


YAV & ASSOCIATES gaming lawyers carefully consider and evaluate the impact of any advice – regardless of the task at hand – on our clients’ continued compliance with gaming laws and their reputation among gaming regulators for honesty, integrity and business acumen. That is our value add.


►  We know it’s important to you to work with true sector specialists. We are ranked in the top tier for gambling in Legal 500, and you can trust that you are working with some of the best gambling lawyers in the industry. This includes advice on business strategies for international gambling projects, both in-bound into Congo as well as out-bound to international markets. Our gambling industry clients in this area include gaming machine manufacturers, wagering operators, casino operators and other gambling service providers, whether online or land based, as well as gambling industry associations and other local and international gambling industry participants. We also advise a number of leading participants in the games sector. Our clients range from console games suppliers to social games websites, as well as a number of esports tournament organisers.


► Betting, Gambling and Gaming


Our betting, gambling and gaming dispute Lawyers are experienced in dealing with a range of legal services surrounding betting claims. We can provide you with clear and pragmatic advice in both dispute resolution, corporate and regulatory matters.

Yav & Associates gaming attorneys have decades of experience representing the diverse and growing range of participants in the gaming industry. We have significant experience advising clients including owners and operators of casinos and pari-mutuel wagering facilities, online/mobile operators, manufacturers of gaming equipment and software, eSports entities, key employees, banks and non-traditional lenders, as well as vendors that provide goods and services to casinos.


► Licensing, Findings of Suitability and Approvals


All gaming industry participants, share a common element: participation in the gaming industry requires a license or approval from a state gaming regulatory authority and/or an approval by a corporate compliance committee, who issue findings of suitability after conducting rigorous background investigations.

As a core area of our practice, Y&A helps clients obtain and maintain these valuable licenses and approvals, guiding them from the initial application, to the issuance of a license or approval, through the ongoing obligation to update regulators.


►  Maintaining Compliance with Regulations


With our extensive work in the industry, we interpret gaming regulations and work with regulators to address clients’ issues promptly and clearly.


Y&A gaming lawyers advise on regulatory compliance and reporting requirements, compliance audits and internal investigations. Our goal is not only to help clients conduct the required investigations of those with whom they do business and document those efforts for regulators, but also to identify and address potential issues before they become areas of concern to regulators. 

We then develop practical solutions to address the issues and fashion disclosures that satisfy legal requirements, while remaining sensitive to our clients’ needs and reputations.



Environmental Law

► Environmental issues might not instantly come to mind when businesses think about economic success, but ultimately compliance with the governing environmental law and the management of related issues can decide upon the fate of a project or transaction.

► At Yav & Associates we assist our domestic and international clients with all aspects of environmental law, including advice on the environmental aspects of commercial transactions, regulatory proceedings, disputes and litigation proceedings, as well as environmental assessments. We also represent clients in administrative and civil procedures regarding the management of contaminated air, soil or water, and advise on corrective actions, determination of environmental responsibilities, water law, waste law, public health, emission quotas and environmental taxation. 

Real Estate & Construction

► Whether assistance in terms of commercial, industrial or residential real estate or construction is needed, Yav & Associates is on top of the latest developments in the industry and will be delighted to advise on any type of project.


► Our real estate practice guides clients in a wide range of real estate transaction in DRC. The team has a profound understanding of the local market and legislation and is committed to providing the best possible legal advice. We advise on the full range of real estate and construction matters, including project development, property acquisitions and disposals, sale and leaseback, joint ventures, financings, agreements (e.g. lease agreements, construction agreements, etc.) and contracts, as well as property disputes and construction litigations.


► Our advisors always take environmental implications into consideration when advising on real estate and construction matters and therefore proactively address and eliminate potential obstacles in the process.

Family law & Successions

► Family Law


YAV & ASSOCIATES  lawyers handle all aspects of family law, including marriage, drafting prenuptial agreements, matrimonial proceedings & relief, including International Adoption, child custody, restitution of conjugal rights, judicial separation, nullity of marriage, dissolution of marriage, settlement. We equal provide legal guidance on property rights of spouses and family members including children. 


We also advice on the civil status of persons (birth registration, marriage registration, and other civil status certificates). We advise persons on how to obtain from the competent authority issuance of a new civil status certificates when they have lost their civil status certificate or when they have been destroyed. We equally help persons interested in changing their names and other related matters. 


► Estate Administration & Successions Law


Estate administration does not concern solely the estate of deceased persons. Estate law has to do with the estate of persons, particularly the laws governing a person’s net worth consisting of the sum of all his assets, legal rights, interests, and entitlements to property of any kind, less his debts or liabilities. While a person is living he has to pay attention to personal income tax, tax law, real property tax, trusts law, real property ownership laws, intellectual property law, investment and commercial activities and business law (shares & stocks ownership), family law, guardianship law, banking law, social security law, insurance law, laws regulating professional activities, foreign exchange laws, succession or inheritance law, debt & personal bankruptcy law.


YAV & ASSOCIATES Law Firm offers comprehensive legal services in the area of estate and inheritance law. We draft wills, provide clients with tools to effective distribute property in compliance with applicable laws, we advise on trust maintenance and fiduciary duties, assist families to admit wills to probate and assist in the administration of estates in a manner that is compliant with laws. Where there is no will (intestate succession), our law firm also helps interested parties and family members to run smoothly according to the laws. 


 Thanks to our experience in international law, we are able to intervene in all the fields of family law and successions, particularly when there are cross-border factors. Our law firm will assist you to handle these issues with professionalism. 

 Due Diligence,  Compliance and Investigations

► Our lawyers have significant experience dealing with and advising upon clients’ legal needs concerning regulation within DRC and Africa. Our Regulatory and Compliance Group gives legal advice on both contentious and non-contentious matters. These include compliance, licensing, investigations and prosecutions, regulation-based claims, money laundering and related white collar criminal aspects. We advise across a wide range of sectors and industries and are familiar with a wide range of regulators.


► The legal due diligence process is all about mitigating business risks. Through our team of lawyers and consultants we undertake legal due diligence for our clients that are entering into cross-border joint ventures or mergers and acquisitions (M&A)  engaging new international franchisees, partners or investors; engaging in intellectual property research; engaging in legal/business contract details; ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements; and ensuring compliance with laws.


► Our due diligence specialists and legal advisors have a track record of conducting small and medium business due diligence in respect of potential acquisitions, licensees, staff and vendors, in key industries across emerging markets. We are also able to assist with investigative due diligence checks on vendors that are retained within the business post-acquisition as consultants or in some other capacity.


► A legal due diligence on a particular company or entity can comprise of the following risk reviews in respect of that company or entity including an inspection of its physical location and all records held by that company or public authorities: company law compliance and structure; business permits and/or approvals; employment and labour law compliance; environmental law approvals, permits and compliance; contractual rights and obligations; intellectual property rights and obligations; real property law compliance; securities and financing regulatory compliance; tax exposure risks; consumer protection law and exposure risks; international trade and export permits and/or licenses; previous and/or current litigation; media reports; external consultants and/or advisors;


Investigations : We can respond to challenges of any size, tailoring individual teams to the needs of our clients. We commit to providing services of the highest quality and integrity (including data management) and to do so efficiently and cost effectively.

Our team  works side-by-side with our compliance specialists to assist  companies to conduct innovative proactive compliance reviews, develop effective compliance programmes to control risk, train employees, create monitoring and auditing procedures, and devise strategies for remedial action. This innovative approach sets us apart from traditional investigation practices.