WHO WE ARE
Baker Botts has one of the world’s leading teams of dedicated international arbitration lawyers. Our diverse team combines a global pedigree with excellence in advocacy, working across all of our offices to provide round the clock service with round-the-world experience.
Highly Credentialed Lawyers with Global Experience
We are a multinational team, with international arbitration lawyers from North and South America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Our lawyers have been trained in the civil law, the common law and public international law. Members of the team have been employed by or worked with key arbitral institutes. Because we sit as arbitrators as well as serve as counsel and advocates, we understand the decision-making process.
Our deep experience in the hearing room gives us the insight to understand what is important to motivate a successful result. That gives us the confidence to separate what actually matters — the “big picture” — from the rest. This means we can work effectively and efficiently for our clients. It also means our clients have instant credibility with the arbitrators who will decide their cases . . . and with the adversaries that must evaluate their litigation risks.
International disputes are often complex, with multiple applicable laws, different languages and factual twists and turns influenced by cultural differences. We look for strategic opportunity in these complexities. As a testament to our ability, our lawyers are often engaged to save a case that appears to have already been “lost.” Our clients also look to us to solve their most serious disputes, with many of our cases involving claims for hundreds of millions — and sometimes billions — of U.S. dollars.
WHAT WE DO
International Commercial Arbitration
International commercial arbitration provides parties from different legal, national and cultural backgrounds with neutral ground, flexible procedures and independent decision makers to solve their disagreements, often confidentially. When “fast track” procedures are used, a final and internationally enforceable decision can be obtained in months.
Our commercial arbitration practice finds us representing claimants and respondents in many industries, including energy, petrochemicals, telecommunications and technology, construction, pharmaceuticals, finance, insurance and manufacturing.
The proceedings are seated – and our clients are found – throughout the world. They are before all of the major arbitration bodies, as well as ad hoc arbitral tribunals.
These disputes arise under the civil law, common law, Sharia and lex mercatoria, with recent examples including the laws of Belgium, Brazil, China, the Czech Republic, Ecuador, England, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iran, Korea, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Switzerland, Trinidad and Tobago, the United States and Yemen.
Investor State Disputes
Thousands of bilateral and multilateral investment treaties, including many recent free trade agreements, give those doing business outside their home country important substantive rights vis-à-vis the States hosting their investments. Frequently, the foreign investor will be entitled to enforce those rights through international arbitration against the host State.
Our investor-State dispute practice finds us representing investors and States in disputes regarding the alleged mistreatment of investments. These disputes raise issues such as expropriation, fair and equitable treatment, most favored nation treatment, and the adequacy of the protection and security provided by the host State. The amounts in dispute range from the millions to over US$ 100 billion.
These disputes present often intricate questions of public international law, including issues of treaty interpretation. When they cannot be resolved amicably, they are brought before the ICSID, the PCA in The Hague and other arbitration bodies.
Other Public International Law Matters
Recognizing the unique combination of our arbitration lawyers’ forensic skills and legal training, our clients regularly ask us to advise on other issues of public international law, typically in the context of cross-border projects involving natural resources.
Our public international law practice finds us advising on claims under the European Convention of Human Rights, disputes involving the application of the Kyoto Protocol to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the rules and principles concerning dealings with the effective government of a State, the customary rules of the Law of the Sea applicable to navigation through international straits, and the effects of termination of and withdrawal from international treaties.
Frequently, our clients face multiple, related legal proceedings in different jurisdictions. In these situations, coordination and consistency of strategy are essential – and so is the expertise to understand and manage the complex procedural issues that arise from the multiple, potentially different laws and rules that may apply.
Our multi-jurisdictional litigation practice finds us pursuing or defending a wide variety of parallel legal proceedings, including arbitrations, national court lawsuits and international court proceedings.
Because our team includes lawyers trained in the common law, the civil law and public international law, we are adept at developing and effecting a consistent, commercially sensible strategy that works multi-jurisdictionally. We then implement that strategy, selecting local counsel where needed from our network of trusted colleagues around the world.