Horacio Bernardes Neto

Senior partner of Motta Fernandes Advogados, IBA President

About this speaker

Horacio Bernardes Neto is the President of the International Bar Association (IBA). His tenure is for the calendar years of 2019 and 2020.

Mr Bernardes Neto has been a member of the IBA since 1982. He sits on the IBA Management Board and has held the posts of IBA Vice-President (2017–2018); IBA Secretary-General (2015–2016); and Chair of the IBA Bar Issues Commission (2013–2014).

He is a senior partner of Motta Fernandes Advogados (MFA), which is continually recognised as a leading law firm in Brazil by specialised vehicles. Before joining MFA, Mr Bernardes Neto was a founding partner of Xavier, Bernardes, Bragança – Sociedade de Advogados (1995–2011), a partner at Bomchil, Castro, Goodrich, Claro, Arosemena and Associates, and with Dr Graf von der Goltz, Dr Wessing & Partners in Düsseldorf, Germany (1980–1983) and London (1983). His main areas of expertise are M&A, general corporate law, private equity, antitrust, contracts and arbitration.

Mr Bernardes Neto has taken leadership roles in global pro bono work and is a founding member of the Pro Bono Institute. He was also a member of the Drafting Committee of the Pro Bono Declaration for the Americas that was facilitated by the Cyrus R Vance Center for International Justice of the New York City Bar Association.

Accolades attributed to Mr Bernardes Neto include:

Mr Bernardes Neto is a graduate of the University of São Paulo Law School (Bachelor of Laws, 1977). He also holds a post-graduate degree from the Institute of International Commercial Law, University of Cologne (1982). He is admitted in Brazil and is a member of the German Bar Association. Mr Bernardes Neto also holds a degree in Pedagogy from Oswaldo Cruz University (1977).

Past and present officer positions of Mr Bernardes Neto include: former Council member, Brazilian Bar Association (OAB), São Paulo Chapter (2000–2015); former President (1994–1995) and present Honorary President, International Association of Young Lawyers; former President (2003–2006) and present Executive Officer, Centre for the Study of Brazilian Law Firms; Legal Council Member, Council of Legal and Legislative Affairs, Federation of Industries of the State of São Paulo; Council Member, Commercial Association of São Paulo; former Council Member, Superior School of Law of the OAB; and Council Member, São Paulo State Art Gallery.

Mr Bernardes Neto is a member of a number of legal organisations, including: the International Relations Commission of the Brazilian Bar Association Federal Council, São Paulo Lawyers Institute, São Paulo Lawyers Association, Brazil-Germany Jurists Association and Brazil-Germany Legal Studies Society.


Looking Forward

Horacio Bernardes Neto