Pre-action resolution of claims and disputes
Many claims or disputes can be resolved without recourse to formal proceedings or the use of alternative dispute resolution. It can often be effective both in terms of costs and time for parties to address their differences in this way, whether in terms of a detailed early-stage settlement agreement, or a simple letter which records their terms.
At Gherson, we look to find ways for our clients to resolve their disputes in this way where it is in their best interests. Our experts are experienced in these kinds of settlements and compromises and are skilled in negotiating them on behalf of our clients.
Furthermore, there may be situations in which at least part of a dispute can be resolved relatively quickly and in correspondence, thereby narrowing the scope (and likely the time and costs) of what may remain contentious between the parties. Our recent experience has been successful in this area, particularly in the field of account freezing and closure: we have been able to obtain the release/transfer of funds for our clients (for multi-million-pound sums) in correspondence.
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and Ombudsmen
Whether at any early stage or prior to / during formal proceedings, forms of alternative dispute resolution can be an invaluable way for our clients to resolve their disputes without the costs and inconvenience of a full hearing before a Court.
Our disputes team is experienced in handling many different forms of ADR, including mediation and expert determination. We are also well-placed to advise our clients on and assist our clients with pursuing complaints before Ombudsmen, including the Financial Ombudsman Service, which has a wide jurisdiction to resolve complaints from consumers over a range of financial products.
Proceedings before the Courts of England and Wales (and in particular the High Court) are at the heart of our civil disputes practice. Our team is experienced in bringing and defending claims before the English Courts on a wide range of matters.
International arbitration has enjoyed a consistent and strong growth over the past few decades. Clients will often have chosen in advance (in their contracts) to submit some of their most complex disputes to arbitration, being encouraged by it generally taking a more ‘business-like’ approach to resolution of claims than the Courts, and typically enjoying more confidentiality then Court proceedings will provide.
Our experts have strong experience in international arbitration, across many of the major fora, including the LCIA, ICC and SCC.
Investment Treaty Arbitration
Investment treaty arbitration is a unique area of public international law which draws its authority from treaties between states governing the terms on which foreign investors and investments are protected. Navigating the complexities of this process is a legal specialism, which requires lawyers familiar with its practices and procedures, as well as the – often subtle – variations in treaties between different countries.
At Gherson we have a team with a wide range of experience in investment treaty disputes.
The firm’s principal, Roger Gherson, has advised on and been involved with such disputes in his more than 40 years of practice.
In order to further enhance our in-house expertise in this area in particular, Dr Cong Gao recently joined the team at Gherson. Cong has a particular interest in investment treaty arbitration, having been awarded a PhD in International Investment Arbitration by the University of London, with her doctoral study being on investor-State dispute settlement mechanisms available to foreign investors in China.
Cross-border disputes and strategic advisory services
A dispute is often part of a wider set of issues faced by our corporate and individual clients. These might not be limited to a single jurisdiction or forum and/or might involve fighting on multiple fronts, such as interrelated claims or concurrent criminal and civil matters.
By drawing on the wealth of expertise in such complex matters from across the firm, we can help to oversee and manage the strategy for our clients. Our civil experts can work closely with our other teams (including sanctions, immigration, and criminal experts) to assist you in managing the strategy for such situations and taking a co-ordinating role.
In doing this, we can help you identify and tailor the steps you might wish to take to obtain the best outcomes for what matters to you or your business the most, such as by helping you to mitigate risk, account for your wider objectives, and ensure that steps you take in one area are support your aims in others.
Selected recent representations
Recent work of the Gherson disputes team has included:
- Representing a foreign client in a multi-million-dollar commodities dispute before the High Court.
- Advising an UHNW individual in cross-border enforcement risks over assets held through complex arrangements.
- Devising the initial strategy for a potential investment treaty or cross-border claim with respect to expropriation of assets with very significant value.
For more information on how we can assist you as an individual with civil disputes, please click here, and click here for corporate disputes.