International Business Disputes

International business continues to grow, and to constitute a larger and larger part of American business.  Cross-border investments also make up a growing share of nationwide investment portfolios. Accordingly, international business disputes are increasingly being encountered not only by longstanding multinationals, but also by American middle market companies and closely-held concerns doing business abroad, and by American investors with international exposure. In the U.S. middle market in particular, international business activities have quadrupled in the last decade, and international disputes have followed. By the same token, overseas businesses and investment partners are finding opportunities, and in some cases facing disputes, in new contexts within the United States.

In cross-border business disputes, the relevant legal procedures, business and legal cultures, and realistic recovery options can be very different from those encountered in domestic disputes. Such cases present risks not encountered in domestic disputes, including different liability risks, challenging enforcement risks, and costs risks where a project involves multiple jurisdictions and is not well-scoped and well-planned from the outset. At the same time, in appropriate contexts these cases also present a wider range of opportunities to choose jurisdictions and procedures, maximize access to adversary information, reach an opponent’s assets, and set off a domino effect of favorable decisions, by courts and arbitrators and by adversaries themselves. And when these disputes arise, effective and efficient action can streamline and even support our clients’ international business initiatives.

We resolve international business disputes for operating companies, investors and private clients from the United States and overseas.  We have particular expertise in disputes in North America and Latin America, the United Kingdom, Europe and the Middle East, East Asia, and offshore financial centers. We have acted in litigations and international arbitrations involving jurisdictions and parties around the world, from the earliest signs of trouble through to settlements, final awards and judgments. We also have deep expertise in the legal and practical aspects of injunctive measures, asset tracing and recovery, and enforcement in jurisdictions around the world, and thus are able to ensure that legal victories result in actual recoveries – or that faulty rulings are limited in real effect.

Our work spans a range of sectors, including international goods and services trade, oil and gas, finance and investment, mining, construction, IP-intensive businesses, shipping, franchising and distribution, real estate, and life sciences. Our lawyers are experienced in:

  • litigation involving overseas parties and issues of foreign law, and coordination of multijurisdictional disputes;
  • international arbitration, and arbitration-related court proceedings before U.S. and overseas courts; and
  • international enforcement and recovery efforts, including investigative and discovery efforts, asset freezing and injunction applications, and effective enforcement of judgments and arbitral awards.

We also provide counsel regarding international transaction diligence across sectors, preparation of business-specific and transaction-specific dispute resolution agreements, cybersecurity compliance and risk events, and risk management over the life of an international project or relationship. We have experience in innovative strategies for the funding of these and other disputes, and can assist in accessing third-party funding for commercial cases where appropriate. 

Experience Matters

International disputes require experienced and savvy counsel to achieve the most efficient and effective results.  Our experience in these matters includes:

  • Representing an offshore petroleum trading concern in an UNCITRAL arbitration against a Caucasus state-owned oil and gas producer, before the Cairo Regional Centre for International and Commercial Arbitration.
  • Defended Swiss bank holding company in complex Texas federal litigation concerning a real estate investment dispute.
  • Defended the former President of the Republic of Korea against Alien Tort Statute claims.
  • Representing investment funds and investment managers from the U.S., the Middle East and North Africa, Europe, and offshore centers, in litigation and arbitration arising out of U.S. real estate investments.
  • Defending Ireland-based transatlantic cable project group against commercial claims in federal litigation in New Jersey.
  • Representing heirs to $40 million estate of Lebanese UHNWI, in litigation in Delaware and coordination of proceedings in Canada and Lebanon and investigation in the U.S. and the U.K.
  • Representing a New Zealand-held U.S. agricultural concern in proceedings against a major U.S. retailer.
  • Representing a French family office asserting claims of securities fraud against a U.S. private bank.
  • Defending a Chinese commercial company in international arbitration against a U.S. counterparty under ICDR Rules.
  • Defending a major Emirati bank in a commercial arbitration against a U.S. counterparty, under LCIA Rules and seated in London.
  • Represented UK-based parent company and other affiliated creditors of a U.S. debtor in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings in Kansas.
  • Defending an offshore investment management firm in a U.S. grand jury investigation of alleged federal tax violations.
  • Representing a Thai developer against a sovereign adversary in arbitration concerning a mining and power generation project, under UNCITRAL Rules at the Kuala Lumpur Regional Centre for Arbitration.
  • Advising a Chinese client in U.S. discovery efforts in aid of an arbitration before the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre.
  • Defending Coca-Cola, Inc. in litigation in Florida against Alien Tort Statute claims arising out of alleged labor abuses in Colombia.
  • Representing a Shari’a-compliant Swiss private bank in an investment dispute in U.S. courts in Mississippi and the District of Columbia.
  • Defended a global Islamic finance and banking group against allegations of terrorism financing, in litigation in the United States and Europe and in international arbitral proceedings, and secured victories in all proceedings.
  • Representing Israeli-based and offshore defendants in federal civil RICO litigation arising out of African mining project, and in related ICSID and LCIA arbitrations.
  • Representing Caymans liquidator of New York-based fund on claims arising out of sale of portfolio of life policies and related loan assets.
  • Defending former Bosnian Ambassador to the United Nations against an international extradition demand.
  • Representing a Shari’a-compliant investment fund in an ICDR arbitration enforcing upon a credit extended pursuant to a mudaraba agreement, and in related U.S. enforcement proceedings.

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