Melissa Gautschi

Attorney-at-Law, LL.M.

Melissa Gautschi is specialised in all legal and regulatory aspects of the insurance sector. She also has extensive expertise in insurance contract law as well as in commercial agreements between insurers and banks, investment funds and other service providers to the industry.

Having started her career in-house at CS Life (unit-linked products/bancassurance) before joining a Zurich law firm where she worked over 10 years as a partner and headed its insurance team, she has a deep understanding of the insurance business. Her clients are major Swiss and international (re)insurers, underwriters at Lloyd’s, insurance intermediaries as well as providers of insurance-related products.

She also advises other financial market participants such as investment funds and asset managers on regulatory issues (cross-border business, financial regulation, etc.).

Melissa was admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1997 and obtained a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in 2001. In London, she was seconded to the insurance department of Norton Rose Fulbright LLP in 2001-2002.

Melissa is ranked by Expert Guides and Who’s Who Legal as a “Leading Practitioner in Insurance and Reinsurance” in Switzerland and a “Top Woman in Business Law”.

Melissa Gautschi

Attorney-at-Law, LL.M.

Melissa Gautschi is specialised in all legal and regulatory aspects of the insurance sector. She also has extensive expertise in insurance contract law as well as in commercial agreements between insurers and banks, investment funds and other service providers to the industry.

Having started her career in-house at CS Life (unit-linked products/bancassurance) before joining a Zurich law firm where she worked over 10 years as a partner and headed its insurance team, she has a deep understanding of the insurance business. Her clients are major Swiss and international (re)insurers, underwriters at Lloyd’s, insurance intermediaries as well as providers of insurance-related products.

She also advises other financial market participants such as investment funds and asset managers on regulatory issues (cross-border business, financial regulation, etc.).

Melissa was admitted to the Zurich Bar in 1997 and obtained a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in 2001. In London, she was seconded to the insurance department of Norton Rose Fulbright LLP in 2001-2002.

Melissa is ranked by Expert Guides and Who’s Who Legal as a “Leading Practitioner in Insurance and Reinsurance” in Switzerland and a “Top Woman in Business Law”.

Professional Career

2021 Founder and Partner at Swiss Insurance Law, Zurich

2017-2020 Counsel and Head of Insurance at Altenburger Ltd legal + tax, Zurich

2006-2016 Partner at Altenburger Ltd legal + tax, Zurich (joined as Associate in 1998)

2001-2002 Seconded to the Insurance Team/Corporate Finance Department of Norton Rose Fulbright LLP, London

1995-1996 Trainee at the District Court of Uster/Zurich

1992-1995 Legal Department of CS Life, Zurich

Special Mandates

Member of the BVV2 working party of the Asset Management Association Switzerland (formerly SFAMA Swiss Funds & Asset Management Association)

Co-author with Sophie Winkler of www.swiss-insurance-law.ch

Languages

English

German

French

Publications

Financial Institutions Act (FinIA): Authorisation procedure for IAMs and trustees as well as measures to be taken: ARIF Seminar „AML 2020 und FinIA-authorisation procedure“, 5 June 2020

Portfolio managers and trustees – FINMA authorisation: what needs to be done? Melissa Gautschi, Stéphanie Hodara El Bez, Cecilia Peregrina in: Altenburger Newsletter May 2020 

New rules for insurance distribution: Melissa Gautschi, Karin Furrer in: Altenburger Newsletter October 2018

Cross-border insurance: a refresher on the Swiss-Liechtenstein and Liechtenstein-EU passporting regime: Leonhard Toenz, Melissa Gautschi, Karin Furrer in: Altenburger Newsletter May 2017 

The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Insurance & Reinsurance 2017 Edition – Swiss Chapter: Melissa Gautschi, Anna Neukom Chaney in: Global Legal Group Ltd, London → read PDF

W&I Versicherung – Absicherung von Transaktionsrisiken bei Unternehmenskäufen: Melissa Gautschi, Thierry Thormann in: Zeitschrift CH-D Wirtschaft November 2016 → read PDF

The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Insurance & Reinsurance 2016 Edition – Swiss Chapter: Melissa Gautschi, Julia Jung-Utzinger in: Global Legal Group Ltd, London → read PDF

Impact of the proposed Swiss Financial Services Act on the Swiss Insurance Supervision Act: Melissa Gautschi, Karin Furrer, Sophie Winkler in: Altenburger Newsletter February 2016

Implementation of the new FATF Recommendations in Switzerland: Cyril Troyanov, Melissa Gautschi, Lillian Chavan-van Campen in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, May 2015

The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Insurance & Reinsurance, 2015 Edition – Swiss Chapter: Melissa Gautschi, Julia Jung-Utzinger in: Global Legal Group Ltd, London → read DPF

Swiss investment funds regulation – Upcoming implementation deadlines: Melissa Gautschi, Stéphanie Hodara El Bez, Cecilia Peregrina in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, January 2015

The characteristic performance of a reinsurer – Jurisdiction for reinsurance contracts: Melissa Gautschi in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, April 2014

Entry into force of the new Swiss investment funds regulation: Stéphanie Hodara El Bez, Melissa Gautschi, Cecilia Peregrina in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, March 2013

FINMA distribution report on enhanced customer protection rules: Melissa Gautschi, Mark Hippenmeyer in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, February 2011

FINMA position paper on legal and reputational risks in cross-border financial services: Melissa Gautschi in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, November 2010

New Proposed Rules on the Compensation of Insurance Brokers Under the Draft Insurance Contract Act: Melissa Gautschi, Dominique Müller in: CapLaw, 4/2010

Implementation of the EU Reinsurance Directive (2005/68/EC) in Liechtenstein: Melissa Gautschi, Dominique Müller in: ALTENBURGER Newsletter, March 2010