Katja Perätalo

Counsel | Helsinki

Katja has strong experience in managing and negotiating the contractual side of industrial and energy sector construction and outsourcing projects. Her area of expertise covers all phases of projects before, during, and after execution and both in terms of non-contentious and contentious aspects. Katja has focused especially on contractual issues and disputes relating to power plants and industrial projects by drafting and negotiating various kinds of construction and supply contracts, advising on claim/delay management and other strategic issues with contentious interfaces during project execution, handling both potential and realised disputes relating to, for instance, delays, performance, and variations in said projects, and advising in M&A and project finance deals in relation to the contractual scope of this industry sector.

Katja has recently published her doctoral dissertation on liabilities between parties of a construction project, with a particular focus on the interface between tort and contract law. The dissertation was publicly examined in September 2020.

Before joining Hannes Snellman, Katja was in charge of contracts & claims management within the procurement function and a member of the procurement management team at one of the largest industrial companies in Finland. Katja also has several years of experience from working in another large Finnish law firm, during which time she also went on secondment to a large international law firm in London. Before her legal career, Katja worked as an analyst in the real estate & construction industry.

Katja is a former international level athlete with European finalist and World Championship semi-finalist placements, for instance. She also held Finnish records for over a decade. This has transformed into high aspirations in her professional goals as well.

Memberships and Positions of Trust

  • Urhea (Pääkaupunkiseudun urheiluakatemia), Member of the Board, 2009–2013


  • Vastuumuotoerottelu ja rakennusurakka - Velvoiteoikeudellinen tutkimus sopimuksen ja deliktin väliselle rajapinnalle sijoittuvista vahingonkorvauskysymyksistä rakennusurakan vastuuasetelmien kontekstissa, Alma Talent 2020
  • Joint and several liability in the context of construction projects, Oikeustiede–Jurisprudentia L:2017 (Suomalainen Lakimiesyhdistys, the Finnish Lawyers' Society) 2017
  • Tort liability between parties to a construction project, Oikeustiede–Jurisprudentia XLVII:2015 (Suomalainen Lakimiesyhdistys, the Finnish Lawyers' Society) 2015
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in Construction - Country Guide Finland (Co-author),
    IBA International Construction Projects Committee 2014
  • Liability of principal designer towards special designer in a builder-driven construction design project, Business Law Forum (University of Helsinki) 2013

Education and Professional Background

  • Counsel, Hannes Snellman, 2020–
  • Manager, Contracts & Claims, Neste Corporation 2016–2020
  • Senior Associate, International Construction & Projects, Castrén & Snellman, 2012–2016
  • Seconded Lawyer, Projects, Simmons & Simmons, 2015
  • Analyst, Mrec, 2011
  • Junior Analyst, Asuntoturva, 2009–2011
  • Doctoral dissertation publicly examined in September 2020, University of Helsinki
  • Master of Laws, University of Helsinki, 2012
  • Master of Science (Technology), Aalto University, 2010