Our Practice & Approach

Schoenherr's arbitration practice consists of a diverse team of lawyers spanning offices, languages and borders. It combines extensive arbitration expertise with local know-how. As a result, the team handles some of the largest investment and commercial arbitrations around.

The practice covers a multitude of industries (m&a, oil and gas, construction, automotive, pharma, media, banking, healthcare, telecom) and has acted before all major arbitral institutions (ICC, LCIA, DIS, VIAC, PCA and others).

We have an outstanding track record in investor-state disputes. We are "unbeaten at ICSID". Our arguments have become law. And we continue to make headway, acting for investors and states in the highest-profile investment arbitrations in the region.

Our geographical footprint is our asset. The practice operates across the CEE region and takes advantage of an integrated network of experts. This transnational approach allows us to advise in multijurisdictional, complex and even politically charged disputes.

In many ways we are pioneers. Clients rely on us to deliver innovative solutions to their most important legal problems. And we do – efficiently and cost-effectively – all while continuing to match top tier arbitration firms worldwide in terms of the number and complexity of cases, quality of advocacy and internationality of clientele.

Our Experience

Our investment arbitration practice has had unrivalled success, including:

  • successfully representing a Belgian investor against the Republic of Serbia, where a ground-breaking award was rendered in 2018 in favour of the investor;
  • successfully representing an Austrian investor in an ICSID investment arbitration where an award was rendered in 2018, again, in clear favour of the investor;
  • successfully representing Moldova in a USD 15m investment dispute brought by four US investors, where we managed to slash damages to a few hundred thousand dollars;
  • successfully representing a Cypriot investor in an investment arbitration under the ICSID Rules, where we successfully pleaded and won a complex jurisdictional issue involving the international law notion of "seat"; and
  • successfully representing the Republic of Montenegro in five individual investment arbitrations (ICSID and UNCITRAL), each time securing a favourable outcome for our client.

Highlights of our commercial arbitration practice include:

  • successfully representing a Kosovan mobile phone operator in an ICC arbitration with a state-owned company, Kosovo's largest commercial arbitration to date;
  • successfully representing a Central European company in an ICC arbitration under a construction agreement governed by English law; and
  • successfully representing a global professional services firm in an ICC arbitration relating to a restructuring, in which we achieved a very favourable settlement.

Would you like to learn more about us and our experience? Contact us!

Our Recent Developments

With our arbitration practice growing, and our cross-office collaboration thriving, we maintain the lead in the region and are at the forefront of key international trends.

Third-party litigation funding is a hot topic across CEE. Just an emerging trend not long ago, it has made its mark all over the region, and we are right there to accommodate it. We collaborate across offices, with clients and funders, and on multi-claimant disputes. With a well-structured setup, our clients can expect to run their disputes nearly risk-free.

Our pioneer work continues with state liability in foreign investment protection. With the European Court of Justice's Achmea decision, the future for foreign investment in Europe looked bleak. Now we are breaking ground by implementing innovative state liability solutions.

Our Aim for Efficiency

Thanks to its many advantages, the use of arbitration has grown exponentially. A key benefit is that the parties get to design their own proceedings. That puts the length and costs of an arbitration in the hands of the parties, not in those of a judge. We know many ways to improve the efficiency of any given arbitration. In our series, we explore these tools and how to achieve a favourable outcome without wasting resources.

Efficient Arbitration: Metrics

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Launching an Efficient Arbitration

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Winning an Efficient Arbitration

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To read Part 4 click here

To read Part 5 click here