B. C. Toms and Co

Law Offices


B. C. Toms & Co is a multinational law firm of Ukrainian and Western lawyers specialising in Ukrainian law. We were the first Western law firm to open a Kyiv office, having focused our practice on Ukraine at its independence in 1991. Our Firm has a broad corporate, tax and litigation law practice. We have handled the legal work for many of the largest commercial transactions and most important lawsuits in Ukraine.


We have a widely known reputation in Ukraine for providing the highest quality legal services. We are ranked as one of the several best law firms in Ukraine by the KyivPost independent ranking of law firms.


We combine the best western expertise, having the most experienced western lawyers in Ukraine, with the leading specialist knowledge of Ukrainian law. As appropriate, we handle transactions involving different languages as well as different laws and cultures. Lawyers in our Firm are fluent in Ukrainian, Russian, English and French. We have also written numerous books and articles on Ukrainian law, and are the principal author of the books “Doing Business with Ukraine”(ICC) and “The Law of Ukraine”.


Our legal practice is based on our commitment to client service. We organize our practice in teams around our clients to respond to and understand fully each client’s needs. We efficiently deliver timely work and keep clients regularly informed of our progress on a matter.


We are committed to quality. This has earned us a widely known reputation for quality in Ukraine based on the consistently high quality of our work, as recognized by Ukraine’s leading independent ranking of law firms.


Ukraine’s legal system contains many inconsistencies and other special problems as it quickly develops, which make many types of transactions particularly difficult. We do not leave clients ignorant of these special problems, and we do not just tell our clients what they cannot do. Instead, we pro-actively find innovative solutions for our clients. For most of the special legal risks presently inherent in Ukrainian legislation, we have or can develop solutions. Over the years, starting in 1991, we have introduced Ukraine to many forms of documentation that have since become commonplace as well as created innovative litigation strategies. We can provide many examples of such solutions.


Often our clients bring to us extremely confidential matters, for which secrecy is essential for success. Everyone in our Firm is committed to the integrity of our practice and, thus, to keeping each client’s business completely confidential. We carefully protect this confidentiality, with measures such as special IT services and 24 hour office security services providing strict control of access to our offices by third parties.


Our Firm was founded by B. C. Toms, a lawyer with substantial previous experience practising in the US and Western as well as Eastern Europe. He studied Soviet Studies at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris and law at Magdalene College, Cambridge University and Yale Law School, from which he graduated in 1975. At Yale, he was an editor of the Yale Law Journal. Prior to establishing the Firm and handling, initially, a project financing for one of the largest European companies, Mr. Toms was a partner in the London office of one of the largest US based multinational law firms. He has over 35 years of US and UK as well as Ukrainian law practice. Our other western lawyers have similar backgrounds, and our Ukrainian lawyers have all graduated from leading Ukrainian law schools, with excellent academic records and significant practice experience. In Kyiv, our offices are located in a landmark building in the heart of the central business district.
Our clients include many of the largest multi-national and Ukrainian companies and banks, as well as international and multinational organisations, foreign governments and their credit guarantee agencies, smaller companies focused on Ukraine and some significant individual investors.


We often undertake comprehensive due diligence examinations as a basis for transactions, including on a preliminary basis to evaluate potential business partners and a proposed project. In connection with our legal practice, we can usually develop useful, practical information, as needed, to help guide our clients for their business in Ukraine. This practical guidance can sometimes be essential to make the best use of our legal services.


We have one of the most successful litigation and arbitration practices in Ukraine, including in appellate practice before the Supreme Court of Ukraine and for arbitration in venues such as the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague and the London Court of International Arbitration. In recent years, for example, we have succeeded in obtaining the removal of hundreds of millions of Ukrainian hryvnia in tax and related claims and penalties against western companies and their Ukrainian subsidiaries and affiliates. Given the many legal loopholes and problems with Ukrainian legislation, as it continues to develop from its Soviet past to respond to the present needs of a market economy, it is essential in Ukraine for any significant investment not just to have legal documentation and advice of the highest quality, but also to be able to rely on this advice in the event of a dispute. Our advice is backed up by our capable litigation team.


On behalf of our clients, we often intervene before government ministries and committees. We are also constantly involved in legal reform projects. In addition, from time to time, our lawyers act pro bono as special counsel to Parliamentary committees to assist with their legislative reform.