Corporate Governance and Corporate Responsibility

In recent years, and more so than ever with the current economic crisis, corporate governance and corporate social responsibility-related issues are taking on ever greater importance at entities of all kinds, in both the business community and the public sector. As things stand, against a global backdrop of uncertainty, dealing with such issues properly helps to inspire trust in the markets and to act in a more efficient and socially responsible manner.

With this in mind, and with a view to ensuring that the Firm’s clients remain at the forefront of the best practices in such areas, at Garrigues we boast a team of highly qualified corporate governance and corporate social responsibility experts, leading the way in their respective fields and hailing from the various practice areas that come into play: Corporate/Commercial Law, Sustainability Consulting, HR Consulting, Labor and Employment Law, Tax Law, Criminal Law, Environment, etc.

Our multidisciplinary approach and expertise enables us to offer specialist, integral advice on corporate governance and corporate social responsibility that is second to none, providing clients with the value and confidence that comes from a global approach to this specialist area, which calls for every angle to be considered. Here, we offer legal advisory and consulting services to our clients, be they private sector (listed and unlisted) companies or public institutions and agencies, both on the domestic front and the international stage.

As far as corporate governance is concerned, among other matters, we advise on the design and drafting of codes of good corporate governance (bylaws, shareholders’ meeting regulations, board and committee regulations, codes of ethics and codes of conduct); we periodically review such codes, bringing them into line with the prevailing requirements and recommendations; we assist with the production of annual corporate governance and compensation reports, as well as the preparation of policies on directors’ compensation, the introduction and adaptation of corporate governance principles at unlisted companies, and so on and so forth. Along similar lines, we also provide global legal assistance with the preparation of shareholders’ meetings, helping our clients deal with and resolve any type of corporate governance-related issues they may have.

In terms of corporate social responsibility, the services on offer are a more varied mix and take in everything from support for the definition and roll-out of CSR or sustainability strategies and plans to carrying out analyses and audits of both clients and their supply chains; designing CSR and corporate integrity management systems; providing support for managing and interacting with stakeholders; performing CSR-related studies and benchmarking; executing transparency-related projects, and undertaking reporting and processes to implement codes of ethics and codes of conduct; advising listed companies on their inclusion on stock exchange sustainability indexes (DJSI, FTSE4Good, etc.); advising fund managers on the design of socially responsible investing (SRI) tools; assisting with the implementation of the Equator Principles at financial institutions alongside other portfolio and project sustainability rating instruments; introducing the concept of responsible procurement in dealings with providers ,and a whole host of environmental and HR management-related issues.

The team of corporate governance and CSR professionals also includes tax and criminal law experts advising on codes of good tax practices and on crime prevention plans and programs, respectively.

Acting in a coordinated fashion, this professional team is permanently up-to-date with the ever-changing landscape in these areas, proactively offering ideas and solutions to our clients, which include local and international companies at the forefront of their respective fields and industries.

The team members are regular speakers at forums on corporate governance and corporate social responsibility, forming part of and collaborating with institutions in such fields.