Dispute resolution in Iceland

Juris

Juris has leading expertise in competition law and abuse of dominance litigation across a variety of sectors including the telecoms industry, and also fields notable strength in damages claims in the banking and financial services sectors. Beyond these two work streams, the practice also handles constitutional law mandates, shareholder disputes, human rights claims and challenges to the government's authority. In a significant recent matter,  group co-head Stefán A. Svensson, a Supreme Court attorney and competition law expert, acted for Ísfélag Vestmannaeyja in a successful claim against the Icelandic government regarding the government's quotas for the distribution of mackerel. Supreme Court attorney and fellow co-head Andri Árnason has particular expertise in competition law disputes, supplemented by a wider caseload encompassing criminal law matters and disputes arising from winding-up proceedings.

Practice head(s):

Andri Árnason; Stefán A. Svensson

Testimonials

Very good service and have experts in all fields and good contacts abroad if needed.’

Key clients

Kaupþing ehf.

Íslandsbanki hf.

Borgun hf.

Íslandspóstur hf.

RÚV ohf.

Síminn hf.

Ísfélag Vestmannaeyja hf.

Icelandic Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs (fjármála og efnahagsfráðuneytið) on behalf of the Icelandic State.

Míla ehf.

Municipality of Ísafjörður

Korputorg ehf.

Eimskip Ísland ehf.

Work highlights

  • Representing the Icelandic State in the high-profile óbyggðamál cases, which relate to the delineation between private and public land.
  • Represented Kaupthing in a civil claim for the recovery of funds lost due to alleged criminal conduct prior to the financial collapse in 2008.
  • Defended Íslandspóstur in a competition claim brought by Póstmarkaðurinn regarding alleged market abuse.

Lex Law Offices

With a large team of highly qualified litigators, Lex Law Offices handles a high volume of cases in the Supreme Court, and also has considerable expertise in the banking sector in bankruptcy proceedings, damages claims and cases involving alleged embezzlement. The group is also a key name in the market for landmark disputes and was recently involved in high-profile proceedings in the salmon farming and food industries. Supreme Court attorney and group c-head Kristín Edwald specialises in insurance, corporate and fisheries law; she also acted as defence attorney in several of the country's largest post-2008 crash white-collar crime cases. Co-head Arnar Þór Stefánsson also recently prevailed in a landmark dispute, defending Ferskar Kjötvörur in claims relating to the importation ban of fresh meat into Iceland. Garðar Víðir Gunnarsson is a key contact for alternative dispute resolution; he is a qualified arbitrator and a member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration.

Practice head(s):

Kristín Edwald; Arnar Þór Stefánsson

Testimonials

Lex has good lawyers that you can rely on. If you have problems they will help you find a solution. They work well and are conscientious. They are also very honest and don’t tell you what you want to hear but what you need to hear.

Key clients

Sjóvá-Almennar tryggingar hf.

Arnarlax ehf.

Ferskar kjötvörur ehf.

EFLA hf.

Arion Bank hf.

Kópavogur Municipality

Samskip hf.

Landflutningar Samskipa hf.

Renault Retail Group

Reginn hf.

Work highlights

  • Representing Arnarlax in a landmark case on salmon fish farming at sea.
  • Representing five Icelandic municipalities in proceedings against the Icelandic State relating to certain contributions paid to the municipalities by the state.
  • Successfully represented Ferskar Kjötvörur in a landmark case relating to EEA law on the importation ban of fresh meat into Iceland.

LOGOS

LOGOS' 'highly ambitious and tactical' team is regularly involved in major claims for damages in the banking sector, often acting as defence counsel. The group is also active in competition law mandates including cartel allegations and breach of competition law investigations across the telecoms, retail, shipping and payment services sectors. Helga Óttarsdóttir stands out for her expertise in competition law matters, acting before the authorities and Icelandic courts; she is regularly assisted by Halldór Brynjar Halldórsson. In a recent highlight, the group represented Byko in its appeal against a major fine imposed by the Competition Authority relating to alleged cartel activity. Ólafur Eiríksson has considerable expertise in white-collar crime and bankruptcy law.

Practice head(s):

Bjarnfreður Ólafsson

Testimonials

‘The firm has in-depth knowledge and resources that is very comforting for clients who have entrusted them with finding a way to resolve serious disputes.’

‘Helga Óttarsdóttir is very good to work with. She possesses extensive knowledge concerning IP rights and GDPR.’

‘Ólafur Eiríksson very good to work with. Expert in his field concerning dispute resolution.’

Key clients

Morgan Stanley Inc.

Goldman Sachs Inc.

Siminn hf.

Valitor hf.

Marel hf.

Vatryggingafelag Islands hf. (VIS)

Eimskipafelag Islands hf.

Glitnir HoldCo ehf.

Work highlights

  • Acted for Kvika Banki in securing dismissal of all claims made by ET sjón against the client before the District Court of Reykjavik.
  • Acted for Landsbankinn in a claim against Borgun and its CEO to obtain a judgement on the defendants’ liability for damages.
  • Defended Kvika Banki in a claim in excess of ISK300m relating to loss suffered by an investment company as a consequence of allegedly insufficient consultancy services carried out by Kvika Banki predecessor.

Réttur – Adalsteinsson & Partners

Réttur – Adalsteinsson & Partners' practice, which is praised for its 'outstanding quality of work and fast responses', is recognised for its expertise acting for individuals in civil and human rights cases relating to equality law and freedom of speech issues; the group is also instructed by companies in corporate law matters, bankruptcy proceedings and trade mark claims. Ragnar Aðalsteinsson, whose experience includes landmark cases in the Supreme Court and the ECHR, recently represented Guðjón Skarphéðinsson in his successful high-profile acquittal, three decades after he was wrongfully convicted; the practice is also pursuing a damages claim against the State for wrongful imprisonment. Sigurður Örn Hilmarsson's expertise spans IP, constitutional law and human rights disputes.

Practice head(s):

Ragnar Aðalsteinsson; Sigurður Örn Hilmarsson

Testimonials

‘We have worked with various members of the team over the past eight years and the service we have received has been consistently strong.’

Outstanding quality of work and fast responses.’

Key clients

Tenova Pyromet

Icelandic Water Holding

Flux ehf.

Work highlights

  • Acting for a shareholder of a large Icelandic real estate company in complex corporate law litigation.
  • Defending Icelandic Water Holdings against a claim for damages brought by iGWater ehf relating to trade mark rights.
  • Acting for a disability rights’ activist in Iceland, who was denied the right to become a foster parent because of her disability.

ADVEL Attorneys at Law

ADVEL Attorneys at Law has considerable expertise in the insurance sector, where the group defends insurance companies against claims brought by banks relating to D&O contracts. The practice also represents clients in the real estate, telecoms and banking industries in competition law cases and winding-up proceedings. Kristinn Hallgrímsson, who is an expert in corporate law, is head of Supreme Court litigation in the practice, and often acts alongside experienced litigator and practice head Guðmundur Siemsen.

Practice head(s):

Guðmundur Siemsen

Key clients

The Icelandic Government

Atorka Group

Advania Group

SMI ehf.

N1 hf.

Mannvit Engineering

Stræto bs.

Air Atlanta

Vodafone

Askja

3 Verulam Buildings

Following its recent merger, BBA//Fjeldco fields offices in Reykjavik, London and France, and also has New York qualified lawyers. The practice has been notably active in a wide range of damages claims including tort proceedings, construction disputes and cross-border mandates. In addition, the team also has a strong track record in cases arising from the 2008 financial collapse, and expertise in real estate and shareholder disputes. 'Strong diplomat' and group co-head Thorir Júlíusson, who is praised for his 'good commercial understanding', is acting for LBI in three separate tort proceedings relating to compensatory damages issues. Co-head Hafliði Kristján Lárusson, who is qualified in Iceland and England, specialises in disputes relating to IP, technology issues and data protection.

Practice head(s):

Thorir Júlíusson; Hafliði Kristján Lárusson

Testimonials

‘The team’s commercial understanding is sound, and they strike a good balance between flexibility and firmness when providing advice.’

‘Partners are generally engaged themselves on matters and provide very constructive advice.’

‘Halldór Karl Halldórsson has a pragmatic yet very professional approach to dealing with legal issues.’

‘Kári Ólafsson is highly proactive and very efficient in managing disputes.’

Key clients

LBI ehf.

Eik fasteignafélag hf.

Securitas hf.

LÍN

WOW air ehf.

Mannverk

CRI ehf.

The Arbitration Institute of the Finland Chamber of Commerce

FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme)

Harpa Concert Hall

Axis Capital

Work highlights

  • Acting for LBI in three separate tort proceedings with a combined value exceeding ISK50bn.
  • Defending Harpa Music and Concert Hall of Reykjavik against claims by ÍAV, an Icelandic construction company, regarding an alleged violation of its right to build an underground parking structure at the plot where the client’s premises are located.
  • Acted for Axis Capital in a dispute with its Icelandic broker concerning the handling of claims and settlements.