Protect your interests by setting your relationships in the right direction.
Be it a start-up, SME or a large enterprise, agreements are an indispensable tool to manage business interests and relationships. They also tend to provide assurance in scenarios that would otherwise be uncertain or contentious.
Within our commercial agreements practice there is a cognisance of the need to strike a balance between two, seldom aligned, objectives; the need to protect the client’s interests and the need to see the transaction through to a satisfactory conclusion. With this philosophy, Muscat Mizzi Advocates advises clients on matters related to the development, drafting, reviewing and negotiation of agreements.
We advise on all manner of business-critical transactions including, joint ventures, supply and distribution, e-commerce, franchise, licensing, shareholder agreements and lease agreements to name a few.
Mergers & Acquisitions
Muscat Mizzi works with companies and private investors to design and implement M&A programs that achieve critical business objectives.
Our M&A practice goes well beyond negotiating and structuring deals. As legal partner to our clients, we endeavour to add further value by introducing financing options and leveraging our professional network to generate opportunities and deal flow.
We have a particularly strong track record on both buy and sell sides in the investment services, technology and retail sectors. Clients value our timely, pragmatic and commercial approach to problem solving, in addition to our high degree of individualised attention.
The firm assists client with all types of M&A transactions, including:
- Acquisitions and dispositions;
- Joint ventures and strategic alliances.
Trademarks & Brand Protection
In the digital age, brands drive business, and trademarks are a primary tool for their preservation.
Trademark registration is an effective way of ensuring the protection of your brand. Subject to the limitations imposed by trademark legislation, business signs capable of being represented graphically and which can distinguish goods or services of a particular business can be protected by trademark registration. Trademarks usually consist of words, figurative elements, letters, numerals or the shape of the goods or their packaging.
We regularly assist clients register trademarks in Malta and the EU, as well as providing services related to the management of global trademark portfolios. We also guide clients negotiate and conclude agreements related to licensing, franchising, sponsorship as well transfers of trademarks and web domains.
We have previous experience representing clients in contentious trademark proceedings in Malta, including the prevention of the distribution of infringing merchandise.
The globalisation of media has developed copyright into a significant tool for the protection of creativity, knowledge and talent.
As the demand for digital content increases, copyright violations have become more common. Musicians, writers, artists, producers, architects, photographers and performers rely on copyright legislation to protect different forms of idea expressions such as artistic works, literary works, musical works, audiovisual works and databases.
Our deep understanding of the media, entertainment and technology sectors places us in an excellent position to advise clients on copyright law and related commercial issues. We have previous experience:
- Advising on the application of the rights and exceptions available under copyright legislation in Malta;
- Representing clients in copyright disputes and litigation;
- Developing, drafting and negotiating of production, talent, advertising and distribution agreements;
- Assisting clients obtain clearance of rights prior the commencement of audiovisual and other projects.
Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants
In the knowledge-based industries of today’s global economy, the protection of confidential and proprietary information has never been more important.
Whether you seek to protect crucial trade secrets or fend off competitors attempting to prevent a lateral move of talent, we are able to assist you preserve the competitive advantages of your business.
Our deep understanding of the nuances and limitations of restrictive covenants that seek to limit competition, disclosure of information and solicitation of clients allows us to devise creative legal and business strategies intended to prevent a diminution of your company’s goodwill.
In particular, we can assist clients with:
- Trade secret disputes, including filing emergency injunctions and proceedings;
- Onboarding and departure of employees;
- Assistance with restrictive covenants in agreements related to employment , provision of service, mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures and other transactions;
- Preparation of confidentiality, non-disclosure, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements.
Data Protection & Privacy
Muscat Mizzi works closely with its clients to design and develop strategies that enable the utilisation of data without endangering the trust in their brand.
Data is increasingly becoming a core asset for most businesses as it provides insights upon which new services and products can be developed. However, operations regarding personal data are subject to onerous laws and regulations in Malta and the European Union. Oftentimes violations lead to reputational damage that require both effort and time to repair.
Our knowledge on data protection and privacy laws, together with our ongoing relationship with the Office of the Information and Data Protection Commissioner in Malta places us in an excellent position to advise clients on all matters related to data protection and privacy in Malta.
Our experience includes:
- Advising clients on the usage of data in marketing, including consent forms relative to the placements of cookies;
- Assisting clients comply with data protection laws and regulations in Malta and the EU;
- Assisting clients with information requests by the Government, regulators and the Courts of Malta;
- Developing and drafting IT and privacy policies, whistleblower polices and international data transfer agreements;
- Advising clients in relation the effects and changes brought about by the General Data Protection Regulation.
Employment & Industrial Relations
Muscat Mizzi represent both employers and employees with a broad range of work-related issues across the entire spectrum of employment law.
From complex litigation to traditional employment relations, collective bargaining, executive compensation and immigration matters, Muscat Mizzi is well positioned to assist clients navigate the legal and regulatory landscape of employment law. Our experience includes:
- Representing and advising clients resolve trade secrets and restrictive covenants disputes arising from hiring of employees;
- Assisting with the transfer of employees in the context of a transfer of business;
- Developing, negotiating and drafting employment, non-competition and service agreements;
- Developing employee incentives for optimum work performance;
- Evaluating the legal and commercial risks associated with the termination of employment, including collective redundancies
- Representing and advising clients in relation to claims of unfair dismissal.
Muscat Mizzi also provides specialised immigration services to employers looking to recruit talent from outside of Malta through its related company, RC Malta. The company provides consultancy in relation to residency and employment programmes in Malta and acts as a liaison with the respective government departments until the issue of the relative work and residence permits.
In the digital age, where tweets and blog posts can go viral, the years spent building a brand can be exposed to risk upon the occurrence of unforeseen events.
Oftentimes, insufficient or delayed action to such events carries with it severe consequences to the reputation of a business. For this reason, our reputation management practice is dedicated to identifying bespoke solutions to enable clients resolve crises without losing focus on operations.
We leverage our legal and regulatory expertise in addition to a strong network of public relations consultants to assist clients deal with crises in a discreet and timely manner during all stages of proceedings, negotiations and communications.
The firm’s practice is by no means limited to reactive or remedial assistance. We also offer consultancy on preventative measures and avoidance strategies by identifying those risk factors that impinge on the reputation of your business.
Our reputation management services include:
- Assistance with data erasure requests ("right to be forgotten");
- Advisory on the rights and exceptions in press legislation;
- Representation in libel claims;
- Assistance with crisis preparedness;
- Assistance with litigation, employment and restructuring communications;
- Assistance with reputation recovery;
- Representation in governmental and regulatory investigations and enforcement actions;
- Representation and advisory in relation to product recalls and workplace incidents.
Business Set-Up & Corporate Law
Choosing the right set-up can save time, money and can also aid the functionality of your business.
Be it a partnership, company, trust or foundation, we advise promoters, prospective partners and shareholders in respect of the optimal set-up for the proposed business venture, regard behind had to costs, taxation and operations.Additionally, we also provide services related to the actual set-up, maintenance and transactions, including:
- Setting up and structuring of companies, partnerships, trusts, foundations and associations;
- Company Secretarial services;
- Share transfers;
- Pledging of Shares;
- Share Option Agreements;
- Corporate Governance Advisory;
Restructuring, Insolvency & Bankruptcy
In economic times characterised by volatility and aggressive business cycles, any business can pass through stages of distress. Taking action at the right time can save your business and ensure a better return for creditors.
Such periods necessitate the provision of ongoing legal support and advice to ensure that the requirements set out in the Companies Act and other key legislation are observed and that the rights of creditors are preserved.
Our restructuring, insolvency and bankruptcy practice is by no means limited to advising debtors. We also advise creditors and insolvency practitioners in relation to the solutions available to dissolve or restructure a company or a trader’s business. Our expertise covers all types of transactions, including, schemes of arrangement and compromises, company recovery procedures (administration), rescheduling of debts and restructuring by means of corporate finance transactions.
We also have the expertise to advise on matters related to secured finance, ranking of creditors and to represent clients (debtors and creditors) in both formal and informal proceedings related to restructuring, insolvency and bankruptc
Start-ups require specialist legal advice and support to enable them to overcome the challenges that lie ahead.
Having been established in 2016, we have adopted the start-up culture like no other law firm. This is one of the reasons why we are well positioned to assist clients that require specialist start-up advice and support.
Through our special fee arrangements composed of reduced fixed fees, share options and flexible payment terms, and our ability to leverage our professional network to our clients’ benefit, start-ups are now able to access the necessary professional assistance without diminishing their initial capital outlay.
The firm has previous experience assisting start-ups:
- Draft business plans and pitch decks;
- Raise capital through angel investment and government incentives;
- Develop, draft and negotiate financing documentation relative to the issuance of debt securities, equity financing and convertible notes;
- Formulate business development strategies;
- Identifying and negotiating with strategic partners;
- Develop, draft and negotiate business-critical agreements.