Aliff  Fazelbhoy

Aliff Fazelbhoy

Senior Partner - ALMT Legal, Advocates & Solicitors

Contact Details

Jurisdictions
  • India
Address
1st Floor, Free Press House, 215,Free Press Journal Marg, Nariman Point, Mumbai, 400 021
Mumbai India

Practice Area Membership(s)

  • Employment Law (Corporate)

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Biography

Aliff, who was a founding partner in another law firm in Mumbai, merged his practice with ALMT Legal in 2003 to enhance the Firm's tax and M&A practice.  Today, Aliff is recognised as one of the leading lawyers in his chosen fields of practice and has been consistently selected as one of India’s leading lawyers by global legal publications like  Chambers & Partners, Legal 500 and IFLR 1000 amongst others. India Business Law Journal affirms ALMT as a leading Employment & Industrial relations Law Firm for 2014. The Tax Directores Handbook 2015 highly recommends Aliff for his tax practice.

Aliff has helped develop a thriving employment law practice for the Firm and assists several clients on a range of employment law issues including structuring contracts, implementing terminations, establishing and advising on social security schemes, enforceability of post termination obligations, etc. He has also advised on the recently introduced enactment pertaining to sexual harrasment. He has also conducted training workshops in companies in relation to effectively dealing with sexual harrasment complaints. Aliff is also conversant with the United Nations Privileges and Immunities Act, 1947.

Aliff’s tax experience includes advising on cross border tax structuring and issues such as creation of permanent establishment, obligations in relation to withholding tax, transfer pricing, characterisation of software payments etc as well as some indirect tax  issues particularly service tax and VAT for various international and domestic clients. Aliff is also involved in advising on tax related litigation and dispute resolution proceedings before various tax authorities, tribunals and courts.

Aliff’s M&A and corporate practice is mainly focused on transactional work for domestic and international private equity funds and multinational companies.  Aliff also advises several clients in relation to certain capital markets transactions including registration of and investments by foreign institutional investors ("FII") as well as primary and secondary investments by a range of investors in publically listed companies.

Aliff has been consistently acknowledged by leading legal publications and  recommended for his Corporate/M&A, Employment, Private Equity and Tax practice for 2015, 2014 and 2013 by Chambers & Partners. Legal 500 names him as a leading lawyer in areas of Banking and Finance, Capital Markets, Corporate/ M&A and Tax for 2015 and 2014. He has authored articles for international publications and been a panelist at various international tax and M&A conferences and seminars.


Recent Labour & Employment work
• Advising the client, one of the world's leading providers of testing, calibration and advisory services, on issues pertaining to implications of secondment arrangements of expats in India from a provident fund, immigration and income tax law perspective.
• Advising a British multinational contract food service and support services company on the following –
 -Strategy for dealing with allegations by the employee of unfair suspension followed by his dismissal.
 -Process and timelines within which unpaid accumulations are to be deposited with the labour welfare fund authorities and the penalty prescribed for non deposition of the accumulations. Analyzing the law under the applicable acts for 10 states in India;
-Issue pertaining to components of salary on which overtime is payable for 11 states in India. Analyzing the definition of wages under all the applicable acts;
 -Queries pertaining contributions towards provident fund, payment of overtime and components of salary comprising minimum wages.
• Advising the client on termination of services of an employee along with reviewing of appointment letters for employees and contractors, reviewing the company’s employee handbook and drafting of a sexual harassment policy for the company.
• Advised the client, the largest online travel company in the Netherlands, on the appropriate approach to deal with a sexual harassment complaint by an employee against a colleague. The advise involved preparing a detailed memo on the procedure of dealing with sexual harassment complaints, drafting a sexual harassment policy, confidentiality undertaking, memo for the formation of an internal compliance committee to deal with complaints against sexual harassment, resolution for setting up of the internal compliance committee, etc
• Advising the client, A UK based MNC that offers a spectrum of integrated risk management services within Investigations, Training and Security, on the most suitable procedure for the removal of a senior level employee and a director of the company as well as the points of negotiation with the employee for an amicable release from the company.

Other recent transactions
•Advised UK-based testing services provider Exova Group Plc in its acquisition of Mumbai-based Metallurgical Services Private Limited, an independent material testing laboratory.
•Advising a leading international investment banking company on the most tax efficient manner of restructuring their Indian presence including regulatory issues and approvals required for terminating the agreements with their existing joint venutre partner, consequent change in control guidelines to be complied with, etc.
•Advising a leading software multinational in litigating its disputes before the commissioner of appeals, Dispute Resolution Panel, Income Tax Tribunal and the High Court regarding transfer pricing on various services provided by the Indian subsidiary to its US parent and vise versa such as R&D, cost sharing, sales and marketing support, market surveys etc.  Also advised on representations to be made before the India and US Competent authorities under the MAP provisions of the tax treaty.
•Advising a UK based hospitality and catering company on its acquisitions of Indian companies in different States, including structuring the acquisitions and advising on regulatory and tax aspects related thereto, undertaking detailed legal due diligence on the targets, etc.
•Advising several venture capital and prvate equity funds in their first and second round investments in various companies in the business of mincrofinance, IT solutions manufacturing and trading.
•Advised an Indian private equity fund on its exit from its investment in one of India’s leading power cable manufacturers, including negotiating the exit.
•Advised a large foreign bank in connection with the purchase by assignment of a multi million dollar pre-shipment credit facility to an Indian exporter, including structuring the transfer to meet the regulations and issue of a legal opinion on the enforceability of the transaction documents.
•Advised and advising foreign banks on lending to Indian companies under the external commercial borrowing guidelines, including drafting of loan and security agreement, due diligence on the borrower, tax issues, issuing legal opinions, etc
•Advising a large multinational on all aspects on an acquisition of selected assets and employees of an Indian company  including direct and tax issues such as withholding tax, VAT, etc, issues surrounding transfer of employees, migration of social security benefits, etc

Professional appointments and activities
•Bar Council of Maharashtra & Goa, India (1988);
•Law Society of England and Wales (1992)
•One of India's representative authors for the International Beaureau of Fiscal Documentation (IBFD)
•Member of the Indian Chapter of the International Fiscal association (IFA)

Qualifications
•B.Com  – 1985 University of Bombay
•LLB – 1988 University of Bombay (was awarded the gold medal for securing the first rank overall)
•Bombay Incorporated Law Society (Solicitor's exam) - 1990 (secured the first rank and highest marks in all 5 subjects)
•LLM -  1991 University of Cambridge, UK (UCLA)
•Qualified Lawyers Transfer Test - Law society of England and Wales - 1992

 

Firm description

Our practice

ALMT Legal is a dynamic and progressive full service Indian law firm that provides high quality Indian expertise with an international capability. With about 100 lawyers and 19 partners across offices in strategic commercial centres like Mumbai, Bangalore and London, ALMT has an established reputation as one of India’s top bracket firms.

We realise that success is dependent on efficient and timely services. Easy and quick access to top quality service providers is crucial for clients and we strive to achieve this.

We pride ourselves in providing a practical and commercially sound approach to solving business issues to overcome the complex commercial, regulatory, legal and technical issues characteristic of doing business in India. We value our relationship with each client and ensure that our rigorous standards are maintained in all matters, large or small. A dedicated partner handles each matter.

Where we do not have our own offices, we rely on a responsible, dedicated and handpicked group of correspondents that enables us to service client requirements on the same basis and with the same quality assurance that ALMT Legal is proud to offer. At all times we retain the care, control and supervision of all matters referred to any correspondent offices that act under our guidance and instruction.  

ALMT’s practice areas encompass all aspects of Indian law ranging from corporate, commercial to tax, employment, dispute resolution, shipping, aviation and even immigration laws.

ALMT has been consistently recognized for its work in the field of M&A and Private Equity and has been ranked fifteenth in the list of most active PE Advisors and ninth most active M&A Advisors for Q1 2015 compiled by Venture Intelligence. IFLR1000 highly recommends ALMT for Banking, Energy & Infrastructure, Project Finance, M&A and Private Equity practices for 2015. Asia Law Profiles 2015 recommends ALMT for its Intellectual Property, Investment Funds, Private Equity, Shipping, Maritime & Aviation and Tax practices. India Business Law Journal has awarded ALMT Legal as the Law Firm of the Year 2014 in Aviation and Employment & Industrial Relations practice. Acquisition International 2014 has named us Corporate Tax Law Firm of the Year, India. Legal 500 2015 has recommended ALMT Legal in areas of Aviation, Banking & Finance, Capital Markets, Corporate/M&A, Dispute Resolution, Investment Funds, Technology- Media-Telecom (TMT), Real Estate, Shipping and Tax.  Chambers Asia Pacific 2015 has recommended ALMT Legal as a leading firm in Corporate/M&A, Employment, Private Equity, Real Estate and Tax.

Our Team

ALMT Legal partners come from diverse backgrounds, bringing together a wealth of legal, business and cultural experiences. Our partners have international qualifications and have worked in leading practices in India and abroad and are attuned to international best practices.

All our lawyers have firsthand knowledge and experience of the Indian market, including those from our team based in London. All the lawyers at ALMT Legal are qualified Indian advocates with a right of audience throughout India. We also have lawyers admitted to the Law Society of England and Wales, who enrich our talent pool and bring their experience in working with international firms to ALMT Legal.

Associates at every level at ALMT Legal are provided a vibrant and challenging environment in which to develop and expand the skills and expertise that go a long way in assisting our clients. We also attract fresh talent from India's top law schools.