Maria Elizabeth E. Peraltaloriega: Reshaping The Future Of Law & Business

Maria Elizabeth E. Peraltaloriega: Reshaping The Future Of Law & Business

Maria Elizabeth E. Peralta- Loriega, Founding Partner & Co- Managing Partner

Maria Elizabeth E. Peralta- Loriega

Founding Partner & Co- Managing Partner

The global legal services market has experienced significant growth, reaching a value of around $713.12 billion in 2021. In this thriving landscape, Sarmiento Loriega Law Office (SL Law), founded in 2020 in the Philippines, has established itself as a leading full-service legal firm. Guided by a commitment to exceptional service and successful outcomes, SL Law aims to be a trusted legal partner, providing integrity and excellence to its clients. Maria Elizabeth E. Peralta-Loriega, one of the Founding Partners of SL Law, shares her visionary perspective and insights in an exclusive interview. Let’s read.

Could you give a brief account of your professional background and experiences? What inspired you to venture into the legal domain and what drives you today as an industry leader?

I believe that my strong academic background and extensive experience in various areas of law, propelled my successful career in the practice of law. Graduating as the Class Salutatorian from the University of the Philippines' College of Law, achieving an impressive rank in the Philippine Bar Examinations, and my solid grasp of accountancy as a Certified Public Accountant paved t he way for me t o be in involved in various deals that honed my skills to master my craft.

After working at a prominent law firm, I was invited to establish and lead the tax and corporate law practices at a smaller firm, where I served as a Senior Partner for sixteen years. In 2020, I realized my dream of starting my own law firm, Sarmiento Loriega Law. Throughout my career, I have specialized in mergers and acquisitions, energy, project finance, and taxation. I have played a crucial role in major deals across various industries in the Philippines, earning recognition and awards for their excellence.

I am well-regarded in the legal community and have received accolades such as being named among the Top 15 M&A Lawyers in Asia by the Asian Legal Business and consistently being recognized as one of the Top 100 Lawyers in the Philippines by the Asia Business Law Journal. Chambers & Partners has also acknowledged my expertise in taxation and mergers and acquisitions. In addition to my professional accomplishments, I have been honored as Managing Partner of the Year and recognized as a distinguished practitioner in Corporate and M&A and Taxation.

Pursuing a legal career has been my childhood dream, driven by the excitement, challenges, & out-of-thebox thinking it entails

You possess over thirty-four years of experience. How has been your path to success and what is your success mantra?

My path to success entailed a lot of personal sacrifice but was meteoric. I made Senior Partner in my midthirties and now a Founding and Co-Managing Partner of a medium-sized law firm. I look at my work as a form of art and as I perform my art I am guided by my personal mantras of ‘toiling while others are sleeping', perfection, and grace under pressure. I firmly believe that hard work and discipline are irreplaceable in this profession. As we are in the service industry, the quality of our work is our best form of marketing. So, my success mantra is a combination of hard work, discipline, and striving for perfection in everything I do.

How would you define Sarmiento Loriega Law Office as an organization and its current position in the market?

Sarmiento Loriega Law (SL Law) is a medium-sized law firm in the Philippines established in 2020. With over 25 lawyers, SL Law has gained recognition for its outstanding performance in various practice areas. The firm has been ranked by the Legal 500 as a notable firm to watch in Taxation, Dispute Resolution, Corporate, and M&A law. SL Law has also received prestigious awards, including ‘The Best New Law Firm for 2020’, ‘Private Equity and Venture Capital Law Firm of the Year’ for 2021 and ‘The Rising Law Firm of the Year’ for 2022. With a growing reputation, SL Law aims to become a lasting legal institution in the country.

How do you keep yourself up-to-date with ongoing industry trends to steer your organization toward the future?

With over three decades of teaching experience, I understand the significance of continuous learning. I actively engage in continuing legal education programs and take advantage of our law firm's Professional Development Institute. Moreover, I dedicate time to reading books, newspapers, and professional magazines to broaden my knowledge and remain informed. In my profession, being well-informed is an essential aspect that I consistently strive to uphold.

Tell us about your leadership approach. What are the guidelines or methodologies you follow as a leader?

My goal is to inspire and lead by example, encouraging individuals to take ownership of their work and deliver exceptional service to our clients. I believe in empowering people and fostering a sense of pride in their contributions. However, in high-pressure situations with time constraints, I am willing to adapt my management style to a stricter style if it aligns with the best interests of our clients and ensures successful outcomes.

What is the future destination you are heading towards?

Through our SL Law culture, we are building a law practice where we earn the respect and admiration of our colleagues and our clients not just as excellent and hardworking lawyers, but as good human beings driven by a deep sense of values and principles, particularly of humility and kindness that inspire loyalty and lasting friendships. We will grow each other’s careers to the highest heights possible and positively impact our legal profession and our country. But most importantly, we will build an enduring institution filled with pride in our craft.

Maria Elizabeth E. Peralta-Loriega, Founding Partner & Co-Managing Partner, Sarmiento Loriega Law Firm

Maria Elizabeth E. Peralta-Loriega is a highly accomplished lawyer with a diverse academic background and extensive experience. She is one of the founding partners of Sarmiento Loriega Law Office, a rapidly growing mediumsized law firm in the Philippines, specializing in diverse areas of practice, including mergers and acquisitions, energy, financing, real estate taxation, and all other aspects of corporate law.

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