Last year, around this time, I offered a list of 10 investor-state arbitral awards I hoped to see in 2010. If time permits, I may do another list for 2011. But, first I thought I’d take a look back at last year’s list and offer a brief update on those cases. Rather, than do all…

On Monday, December 13, 2010, the United States Supreme Court denied cert for Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s, London v. Lagstein, and in so doing denied the opportunity to further clarify the debate surrounding manifest disregard. The central issue is whether this doctrine survived after Hall Street Associates LLC v. Mattell, Inc. In Lloyds v. Lagstein,…

In July this year, the European Commission published its communication “Towards a comprehensive European international investment policy” (COM(2010) 343 final) and a draft Regulation “establishing transitional arrangements for bilateral investment agreements between Member States and third countries” (2010/0197 (COD)). This initiative is based on the still controversial change brought about by the Lisbon Treaty, by…

In two recent decisions, the Singapore High Court reaffirmed its stance on minimal intervention in arbitration proceedings. The two decisions were made against different sets of circumstances but the Court nonetheless abided by its policy of minimal intervention. This posting examines the two recent decisions, in particular, the approach taken by the High Court. In…

Stolt-Nielsen v. Animal Feeds, 130 S. Ct. 1758 (2010), is an extraordinary case. In Stolt-Nielsen, the U.S. Supreme Court vacated the award of a distinguished arbitral tribunal essentially because the tribunal did not reach the result favored by the Supreme Court. In Stolt-Nielsen, charterers were arbitrating against shipping companies, alleging violations of antitrust law. The…

If a national court is called upon, in the context of an application to refer parties to arbitration, to determine whether a valid arbitration agreement exists, how probing should the court’s examination of the existence or validity of the putative agreement be? Judicial authorities in countries that have adopted the UNCITRAL Model Law on International…

International arbitration often involves parties, arbitrators, and counsel from both Common Law and Civil Law traditions, which sometimes creates misinterpretations about how evidence production will occur. The recent São Paulo court opinion determining that an ICC arbitral tribunal should widen the scope of the expert evidence it was considering in a dispute regarding the construction…

Another arbitral center may be opening its doors soon, but this one intends to be global and to focus exclusively on complex financial disputes, including the over-the-counter derivatives market. The World Legal Forum, a non-profit organization located in The Netherlands worked with varying other groups to create this idea. On October 25, 2010, at the…

Paul Hobeck and Christian Stubbe explained that internationally operating companies fear a “surprising interpretation of the term public policy” when it comes to the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards. Indeed, Russian public policy has been notorious for being unpredictable. Diana V. Tapola concluded in 2006 that “Russian judicial practice is inundated with a…

The controversial topic of third-party funding in international arbitration continues to generate much debate across the conference circuit and in the legal press. On the one hand, supporters claim that such third-party funding arrangements improve access to justice since they allow otherwise cash-poor claimants to pursue meritorious claims; on the other, detractors believe that third-party…

Numbers often speak better than words: international arbitration is nowadays a well-established mechanism for the settlement of commercial disputes; according to published institutional statistics the number of cases in 2009 is three times the number of cases in 1992. According to the 2010 Survey (www.arbitrationonline.org) of the School of International Arbitration sponsored by White and…

Everybody who has visited a certain number of arbitration conferences over the last few years has probably heard at least an equal number of contributions relating to costs in arbitration. Similarly, the number of written articles on the topic in legal literature is enormous and entire books are based on the subject. Considering that cost…

Here in the southern hemisphere, more precisely at Buenos Aires, Argentina, the 5th Annual Congress on Arbitration took place on the afternoon of Tuesday 12 and morning of Wednesday 13, October, co-organized by two institutions: CARAT and the Arbitral Tribunal of the Stock Market of Buenos Aires. Present at the event were a number of…

Within the last two decades, over 30 new states emerged within the international community. From a political, economic, as well as a legal point of view, the formation of a state is always an expedition into unchartered waters. On a domestic level, the establishment of a sound legal system is the prerequisite for a stable…

The subject of codes of conduct for international arbitration practitioners has received considerable attention of late. On one side of the debate, several proposals for such a code of conduct have been circulated recently – one at the ICCA Congress in Rio de Janeiro, another by the International Law Association (“ILA”) Study Group on the…

In the past twenty years the world of investment arbitration has taken the commercial world by storm. There are over 2,750 bilateral investment treaties and almost every one of them has an arbitration provision. Investment arbitration is now a prominent feature of the arbitration landscape. Just as BITs have proliferated in recent years, so too…

Amongst the many issues raised by the now famous Tecnimont case, which we analyzed in our 19 May 2009 blog , was the relevance in setting aside proceedings of institutional rules relating to challenges. The ICC partial award had been quashed by a 12 February 2009 judgment of the Court of Appeal of Paris, because…

The UK Supreme Court released its judgment today in a much-written about dispute pitting a Saudi company against the Government of Pakistan. In the judgment, the Court declined to enforce a 2006 ICC arbitral award in favour of Dallah Real Estate and Tourism Holding Company. A central issue in the case was whether the Government…

Yesterday voters in Oklahoma voted overwhelmingly (70% in favor to 30% against) to ban the use of international law and Sharia law in state courts. It appears that the referendum will be headed to the courts for review, for as my colleague Michael Helfand has noted, the ban on Sharia law may well be unconstitutional…

The European Convention on International Commercial Arbitration 1961 (ECICA) is a multilateral treaty regulating certain aspects of international arbitral proceedings. Some of its provisions cover issues also governed by the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards 1958, also known as the New York Convention (NYC), which was concluded three years earlier…

British legal thinker Richard Susskind famously hypothesized in his book, End of Lawyers?,that the practice of lawyering will not actually end so much as gravitate towards extremes of “commoditized” legal work at one end and “bespoke” work on the other. The commoditization of some dispute resolution work has already begun to occur via the process…