Rafael Giménez-Arnau

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Languages Known:

  • English
  • French
  • Spanish


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Rafael Giménez-Arnau



Rafael is a partner in the Garrigues Labor and Employment Department and has spent his professional career at the Firm after a stint at Arthur Andersen. He specializes in providing strategic advice on labor law and human resources matters to senior management and corporate HR managers.

He has participated in numerous projects over the course of his professional career at Garrigues and is currently a legal adviser with proven expertise in the following areas, among others:

  • Integral labor and employment advice to Spanish and multinational companies, both public and private, in various industries, providing ongoing support for the analysis of all labor and social security-related issues raised and for decision-making in the area of human resources.
  • Restructuring processes, collective layoffs, temporary layoffs and material modifications to collective working conditions (including opting out of the conditions of collective labor agreements): providing advice both at the preparation stage and in negotiations with unions and workers’ representatives, until their effective implementation.
  • Collective bargaining: active assistance and support in the design and preparation of the negotiation process, as well as in the negotiation phase, the agreement phase and in formalizing the agreement. Among other sectors, he has advised gas station employees, notary’s office employees and employers in various collective labor agreements and company agreements.
  • Assistance in court and judicial review proceedings concerning labor and social security-related matters, acting as legal counsel, preparation and assistance in labor and social security-related proceedings at courts in the labor and judicial review jurisdictions (including the following areas of expertise: negotiations with lawyers, preparation of and attendance at hearings, enforcement of judgments, control of deposits and amounts paid into and refunded by the court, appeals, etc.). Knowledge of all instances: labor courts, high courts, National Appellate Court, Supreme Court and Constitutional Court. Conduct of particularly complex proceedings for public and private entities.
  • Corporate restructuring operations, outsourcing, mergers and acquisitions, and processes to standardize conditions. Advice on planning such operations, preparing legal opinions, suggesting the strategy to be followed with respect to procedures, time frame and communication, and direct involvement in the execution of the project, including any negotiations with union representatives.
  • Labor due diligence reports: review of all labor and social security-related aspects of companies in sale and purchase transactions, mergers and acquisitions, acting as an ongoing adviser to a number of private equity firms.
  • Legal opinions and reports on a wide range of labor matters: remuneration systems, senior management, collective procedures, second opinions in cases of particular importance, outsourcing, etc. 
  • Executive and senior management contracts: advice to numerous companies on the preparation, analysis and review of contracts, and drafting of legal opinions requested in this area.
  • Compensation, remuneration and employee benefit systems. Advice on compensation systems from a labor law standpoint, ways of implementing and formalizing them, and their implications.
  • Labor law advice to the Spanish Foreign Trade Institute (ICEX), drafting the labor chapter of the Guide to Doing Business in Spain. He has also advised the public entity INVEST IN SPAIN on the process of analyzing the business climate in Spain from a labor standpoint, staging forums with major companies in sectors considered strategic for investment in Spain, and preparing legal reports containing the conclusions on the business climate in labor terms (with proposed improvements).
  • Labor-related codes of ethics and policies. Advice on the design, drafting and implementation of business codes and policies at Spanish and multinational companies.
  • HR and executive training.

Rafael is mentioned in various prestigious Spanish and international directories, such as Best Lawyers, which singled him out as one of the most outstanding business lawyers, and Chambers&Partners in its Chambers Europe guide, Which Lawyer (Practical Law Company), which ranked him as one of the major labor lawyers in Spain. Moreover, both directories regard Garrigues as a leading Spanish labor law firm.

Rafael has taught on the labor due diligence course organized by ESADE in Madrid and has participated in the master’s degrees in legal counseling at Universidad San Pablo CEU and Universidad de Valladolid. He is currently a speaker on the master’s degree in legal counseling at Centro de Estudios Garrigues.

He has appeared as a speaker at seminars hosted by various entities: Garrigues Labor Update, European Centre for Business Development, Institute for International Research (IIR), FIDE, and the Asociación para el Progreso de la Dirección (APD), and has also given lectures at annual congresses held by the European Employment Lawyers Association (EELA), the principal association of labor lawyers in Europe.

Rafael is a founding partner and member of the Executive Committee of the Spanish Forum for Labor Lawyers (FORELAB), a member of the Madrid Bar Association, and a member of the European Employment Lawyers Association.

Academic background:

Degree in Law, Economics and Business Studies. ICADE-3. Universidad Pontificia Comillas (Madrid).


Member of the Advisory Board of the “Anuario Laboral para Abogados,” published annually by La Ley (Wolters Kluwer Group), having contributed to several editions.
Co-author of various books and manuals: “Taking of Evidence in Court”, “The Insolvency Law”, published by Colección Garrigues (Editorial Marcial Pons).

He recently contributed to the book “Practical Application of the Labor Reform Law”, published by Expansión.

Various articles in financial publications (Expansión, Cinco Días and The Economist), national newspapers (“El País”), as well as the Revista de la Asociación Española de Dirección de Personal (AEDIPE).