Michael Ramirez

Consultant
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T: +66 2653 5794
F: +66 2653 5678

Practices

Offices

Languages

English, Spanish, Thai

Education

JD, University of California, Hastings College of the Law

BA, University of California, Berkeley

Michael Ramirez is a senior consultant in Tilleke & Gibbins’ dispute resolution group, where he assists clients in a wide range of domestic and international disputes. Michael focuses his practice on commercial litigation, including products liability, employment, and transportation and logistics disputes. In addition, Michael and his team of experienced litigators represent major international businesses and their principals in white-collar criminal disputes, including corporate investigations, pre- and post-charge inquiries, and subsequent litigation. Michael also serves as a client advisor on the strategic aspects of claims management for international litigation, cross-jurisdictional disputes, and compliance with international anti-corruption laws, including the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).

Supplementing Michael’s practice is his representation of clients in arbitration and mediation. This experience includes representation in domestic enforcement proceedings, as well as acting with a team of litigators in ad hoc, domestic and international claim resolution. Michael is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. 

Michael has authored and co-authored numerous published articles on topics including arbitration, products liability, and civil and criminal liability. He is also a regular presenter on dispute resolution topics and has been the recipient of the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Award for his presentations on attorney ethics with the Lawyers Council of Thailand. 

  • Acted on behalf of several multinational corporations in high-profile criminal customs disputes involving the assessment and calculation of customs duties and penalties. In addition to our representation in active customs investigations and inquiries, our customs experts regularly counsel clients in a variety of compliance and operational matters related to the import and export of goods and services in Thailand.

  • Represented an American manufacturing conglomerate in four complex defective product claims in Thailand. In all cases we successfully defended the client and secured favorable judgments after comprehensive trials in connection with power generation equipment with a value of approximately USD 3,000,000 each.

  • Planned and executed the layoff of 1,900 employees. Thereafter, 279 of the affected employees submitted claims against the client in the total amount of THB 300,000,000. We successfully proved that our client had cause to terminate its employees and that such was done fully within applicable Thai law, resulting in judgment in our client’s favor. This was a high-stakes matter because, if we had lost the labor cases, the approximately 1,600 additional employees would have filed claims totaling approximately THB 2,000,000,000. We also act as ongoing labor compliance counsel.

  • Obtained a favorable judgment for the Thai affiliate of a leading animal health company in a case filed against a group of former executives who left to work for our client’s chief competitor. We secured this successful result even though there is still debate among Thai legal scholars as to whether noncompetition clauses are fair to employees.

  • Defended a leading global logistics company in three separate criminal actions brought by the Thai Customs Department with potential fines in excess of USD 15,000,000. After a defense put forth at the prosecutorial review stage, the Public Prosecutor issued non-prosecution orders in favor of our client. These orders have since been confirmed and this case is final.

  • Represented a well-known Japanese manufacturer in the prosecution of both civil and criminal matters related to use of confidential trade secret and theft of client property. Our client reached a favorable settlement in the civil claims. In the criminal matter, we worked with the police and the public prosecutor and successfully secured sufficient evidence to support prosecution of the criminal claims.

  • Represented the precious metals division of a large Japanese multinational corporation in claims it filed against its shipper and freight forwarder for the loss of gold dram.

  • Prevailed in a highly publicized termination case wherein the client sought court permission to terminate the president of a labor union based on her television appearance while wearing a controversial T-shirt. The president maintained that she had given such interview on her own time and that her actions were protected by the Constitution. Although she was supported by many NGOs, the court ruled in favor of our client.

  • Defended a leading apparel company in a THB 50,000,000 labor claim and in a criminal case brought against the client’s director. We prevailed in both claims brought by the client’s former HR manager.

  • Represented an international investment banking and asset management company in recovering funds provided to a Thai property developer (claims total USD 15,000,000).

  • Represented a U.S. government office in negotiations with a Thai debtor. 

  • Assisted a client with business reorganization. Our representation included providing legal advice, preparing and submitting the debt repayment application, attending the creditors’ meeting, and attending court hearings.

  • Negotiated a favorable settlement of a highly contested termination of a company director involving our client, the director, and the company of the spouse of the director. The dispute included two criminal cases and two civil cases (one of which involved a claim of THB 20,000,000). We successfully gathered evidence of the director’s misconduct and leveraged that evidence to secure a favorable settlement for our client.

  • Acted for a foreign specialty insurer and secured the dismissal of a large insured cargo claim brought by a joint-venture insurance company against a domestic freight forwarder. We successfully proved that the insured was not liable because the insured was not a carrier or actual carrier of goods.

  • Obtained court approval of a bankruptcy claim in the amount of nearly THB 120,000,000. Our representation included submitting the application for debt repayment, providing supplemental explanations and evidence, and proving our client’s right to the sum.

  • Obtained court approval of bankruptcy claims in  amounts of over THB 75,000,000 (company 1), THB 75,000,000 (company 2), and THB 150,000,000 (company 3). Our representation included submitting the application for debt repayment, providing supplemental explanations and evidence, and proving our clients’ right to the sums.

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October 20, 2014

DVB Interviews Three Tilleke & Gibbins Lawyers on Myanmar’s Trademark System

Darani Vachanavuttivong, Alan Adcock, Michael Ramirez

Myanmar has yet to put in place a robust IP legal regime that exudes confidence among investors. The country’s current laws make no recognition of foreign patents or trademarks, and many date back to...

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September 23, 2014

Tilleke & Gibbins to Host TICC Seminar on Investing in Myanmar

Michael Ramirez

The Thai-Italian Chamber of Commerce (TICC), in collaboration with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP...

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February 18, 2014

Tilleke & Gibbins Named Thailand Law Firm of the Year 2014 by Chambers Asia-Pacific

Tilleke & Gibbins has been named Thailand Law Firm of the Year 2014 by Chambers Asia-Pacific. The award was announced at Chambers Asia-Pacific’s annual Awards for Excellence ceremony, which was...

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November 7, 2013

Protecting Your Directors: Seminar on December 3, 2013

Kobkit Thienpreecha, Michael Ramirez

Directors and officers of both local and multinational companies in Thailand are subject to a complex array of legal duties and obligations. When things go wrong, company executives routinely...

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May 24, 2013

Presentation for In-House Counsel on Thai Litigation Issues

Michael Ramirez, Chusert Supasitthumrong

Pacific Business Press, publisher of Asian-MENA Counsel magazine, is organizing the eleventh annual In-House Congress in Bangkok on June 6, 2013, at the Westin Grande Sukhumvit. Bringing together...

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August 22, 2014

Customs Settlements: Guidelines for Waiver of Prosecution

Kasamesunt Teerasitsathaporn, Michael Ramirez

Every year, numerous companies and individuals face criminal prosecution for violating Thai customs law. The penalties include significant fines and even incarceration. This can have a profound...

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May 16, 2014

Thailand’s Customs Reward System: The Slow March Toward Reform

Michael Ramirez

In recent years, Thailand’s customs regime has come under increased international and domestic scrutiny. One reason is that Thailand remains one of the few countries that presume strict criminal...

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December 25, 2013

PLC Doing Business In … Multi-Jurisdictional Guide 2014 – Thailand Chapter

Darani Vachanavuttivong, Sriwan Puapondh, Kitti Thaisomboon, Michael Ramirez, Anake Rattanajitbanjong, Napat Siri-armart, Kasma Visitkitjakarn, Ahmet Yesilkaya, Chaiwat Keratisuthisathorn

The key to developing a successful business lies not only with having good entrepreneurial spirit and skills, but also with having sound knowledge of the laws and regulations that affect you and your...

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December 6, 2013

Directors’ Handbook: What You Need to Know as a Company Director in Thailand

Kobkit Thienpreecha, Michael Ramirez, Aaron Le Marquer

Directors and officers of both local and multinational companies in Thailand are subject to a complex array of legal duties and obligations. When things go wrong, company executives often find...

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November 25, 2013

Establishing a Company in Myanmar

Michael Ramirez, Yuwadee Thean-ngarm

Myanmar is at an important political and economic crossroads. Spearheaded by the reform-minded government of President Thein Sein, Myanmar has set a path toward a more liberalized democracy, greater...

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