Patrick Hünerwadel

Patrick Hünerwadel
Office:
Brandschenkestrasse 24
CH-8027
City:
Zurich
State:
Zurich
Country:
Switzerland
Tel:
+41 58 450 80 00
Fax:
+41 58 450 80 01

Questions and Answers:

Who's Who Legal Thought Leaders Global Elite

Patrick Hünerwadel joined Lenz & Staehelin in 1989 and became partner of Lenz & Staehelin in 1994. He heads the Zurich banking and finance practice group. His practice covers finance (with a focus on structured finance, asset-backed finance and project finance), derivatives and regulatory. He is the author of various netting/collateral opinions for the finance industry, and its associations and regulators. He studied at the University of St Gallen and at the Morin Center for Banking Law at Boston University. He is co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich bar. He is a lecturer on corporate and contract law at the University of St Gallen.

What inspired you to pursue a legal career?

After high school, I went to St Gallen University, still undetermined whether to pursue business or law. A civil law lecture offered by a charismatic law professor, though, quickly persuaded me to study law and, indeed, it turned out to be fascinating. I still thought I would work in a bank. The very same law professor, however, convinced me that I should first go into legal practice and take the bar and that I could still make the move later. Once in legal practice, though, it became obvious to me that working with many different clients on a variety of projects was the right thing for me. Teaching at St Gallen University gives me a welcome opportunity to share a fascination for the law with young people and perhaps – as did said professor and mentor – convince others to go into the practice of law.

What excites you the most about your role?

What I find most satisfying is to be able to work with very sophisticated clients on a variety of projects, and to participate and contribute to such projects – in most instances, at an early stage so that it allows me and my team to be involved in structuring the project in multidisciplinary teams of the client and its advisers.

How will the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority’s introduction of mandatory clearing obligations impact the derivates market and your practice?

By introducing mandatory clearing for OTC derivatives, Switzerland – like many other jurisdictions with significant financial centres – implements an important recommendation of the G20 Pittsburgh principles to enhance transparency and mitigate risk in trading in OTC derivatives. In preparation, participants in the derivative markets and clearing brokers need to set-up clearing relationships. The Swiss OTC derivative market is typically a cross-border market with close links in particular with Europe and the United States. The categories that have been subjected to mandatory clearing are the same as in the European Union. The underlying transactions are cleared by CCPs in the European Union and the United States. Such foreign CCPs need to be recognised by FINMA so as to qualify for the discharge of the Swiss mandatory clearing obligations. The equivalent rules already being in place in the European Union, many of the Swiss participants are already clearing today. We also note that many participants are willing to clear their trades on a voluntary basis. So as for other jurisdictions, we would expect an ever-increasing percentage of trades in OTC derivatives to be cleared. The recognition of foreign CCPs, establishing clearing brokerage relationships and issuing opinions for Swiss direct and indirect participants in clearing derivatives makes it a busy time for our practice.

What insights did you gain from your role as co-chair of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association?

The banking law practice of the Zurich Bar Association members is very broad and ranges from sole practitioners to large law firms with specialised teams. The focus of such practices also varies widely and in the contentious area one would typically find members representing bank customers, while others would only represent banks. The discussion among such a broad range of practitioners is very fruitful and allows a differentiated view of the financial marketplace.

Which qualities distinguish Lenz & Staehelin from its competition?

With large banking and financing teams in Switzerland’s financial centres, Geneva and Zurich, and a large number of dedicated experts in all sectors of banking and finance closely working with other disciplines such as corporate, mergers and acquisitions and tax, we certainly offer one of the broadest and most seamless legal services for the financial sector, be it for domestic or foreign financial institutions, market infrastructures, investors or customers.

Our success though, in my mind, has a lot to do with the spirit and atmosphere within the firm. Passion for what we do, teamwork, sharing of knowledge and focus on clients are not just buzzwords and add to us having fun at what we do.

In what way has margining in the derivatives markets evolved over the last three years?

Margining has always been a key risk mitigant in the derivative market. With derivatives markets becoming regulated markets, margining has become a point of focus and in many instances has become mandatory at law or standard market practice, be it as variation margin or initial margin. Volumes of margining have, hence, significantly increased and call for proper margining management and techniques that will ensure that highly liquid margin is indeed available in a cost-efficient manner and can be challenging in the context of fully invested portfolios.

As head of the banking and finance group at the firm, what are your priorities for the group going forward?

The financial industry and regulation in the financial sector is globally constantly changing. New technologies have and will continue to drive radical changes at an ever-increasing pace. It is, therefore, paramount for our teams to keep abreast with such changes and to timely think about and address consequences for our clients and our practice. This is not a top-down task, but one that involves all members of the teams. Care needs to be taken, hence, to have the right talents, skilled and initiative, and be ready to address the changes and to see them as an opportunity.

Is there any advice you would give to younger practitioners who would one day hope to be in your position?

Practising law is quite demanding in terms of quality and quantity of work and is usually a lifetime professional activity. Hence, it seems key to me to look for that area of law that one finds truly fascinating, so give yourself time, look around and pick wise. At the same time, at all times remain open for change, even if one keeps on working in the same area of law, the needs and work will always change and perhaps time will come to move to another yet even more fascinating area of law.

Biographies:

Who's Who Legal Switzerland - Banking

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting/collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. Patrick Hünerwadel is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. Patrick Hünerwadel has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: The “excellent” Patrick Hünerwadel is a highly regarded practitioner in the firm’s Zurich office. Peers speak highly of his encyclopaedic knowledge of structured finance and asset securitisation matters.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Switzerland which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Banking: Finance

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting/collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. Patrick Hünerwadel is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. Patrick Hünerwadel has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: Patrick Hünerwadel is one of the most prominent banking practitioners in Europe and is described by peers as “a brilliant lawyer”.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Banking which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Capital Markets: Structured Finance

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting and collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. Patrick Hünerwadel is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. Patrick Hünerwadel has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: Patrick Hünerwadel has a strong structured finance practice and is well-known for his broad transactional expertise.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Capital Markets which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Switzerland - Capital Markets

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting and collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. Patrick Hünerwadel is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. Patrick Hünerwadel has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: Patrick Hünerwadel is a "leading name" who receives wide-ranging endorsements for his capital markets practice and is applauded for his expertise on debt and equity transactions.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Switzerland which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Capital Markets: Debt and Equity

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting and collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. Patrick Hünerwadel is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. Patrick Hünerwadel has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: Patrick Hünerwadel is a go-to adviser among major clients from the finance industry and is known for his expertise in asset securitisation.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Capital Markets which can be purchased from our Shop.

Who's Who Legal Project Finance

Dr Patrick Hünerwadel is an expert in structured and lease finance, asset securitisation and derivatives. He leads the banking and finance practice group of Lenz & Staehelin in Zurich. He is the author of various netting/collateral opinions for the finance industry, its associations and regulators.

Admitted as an expert to the SIX Swiss Exchange for listing purposes, he is a lecturer on corporate law and contracts at the University of St Gallen. He is also co-chairman of the banking law practice group of the Zurich Bar Association.

Patrick Hünerwadel holds a law degree (1984) as well as a doctorate in law (1989) from the University of St Gallen. Admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1987, he joined Boston University’s Morin Centre for Banking Law in 1988 and then Lenz & Staehelin in 1989. He has been a partner since 1994. He speaks German, English and French.

Lenz & Staehelin is the largest Swiss law firm with over 200 lawyers and with offices in Geneva, Zurich and Lausanne. Lenz & Staehelin's scope of activities covers all areas of business law for Swiss and international clients.

WWL says: Patrick Hünerwadel is a leading banking lawyer in Switzerland, who impresses peers with his expertise in structured finance transactions.

This biography is an extract from Who's Who Legal: Project Finance which can be purchased from our Shop.

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