Firms To Watch: Dispute resolution: arbitration and international litigation

Akin’s disputes practice is headed by Graham Lovett, who recently joined from Gibson Dunn. Lovett has significant experience advising on cross-border commercial litigation and arbitration.
Conselis Law was established in early 2022 and focuses on disputes and investigations. Raza Mithani is the key name.
Talal Al Qaisi and Charles Ingmire  are the practice heads at Fatma Al Mutawa Advocates and Legal Consultants. The group’s caseload includes disputes relating to construction, sport and real estate.
Ghaffari Partners is a boutique international disputes practice that was established in January 2022 by Amir Ghaffari, who was previously at Vinson & Elkins LLP. It handles disputes across a range of sectors, including energy, construction and infrastructure, telecoms, healthcare, and banking and finance.
MRP Advisory LLC has niche expertise handling construction and engineering disputes, primarily acting for clients based in India and Oman. Key contacts include Rishabh Jogani and Adarsh Ramakrishnan .
Ruthberg LLC acts for clients in the UAE and globally, and its caseload includes disputes relating to financial transactions, insurance-backed lending, professional negligence and regulation, among others. Leonard Scudder and Tom Keya are the key names.

Firms in the Spotlight Dispute resolution: arbitration and international litigation

Motei & Associates

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Dispute resolution: arbitration and international litigation in United Arab Emirates

Al Tamimi & Company

Al Tamimi & Company regularly acts for domestic and international clients on various matters in the ADGM, DIFC, and Dubai courts, and also has strong international arbitration capabilities. Rita Jaballah heads the international litigation group, with particular expertise in the banking and finance space. Thomas Snider heads the arbitration side, specialising in commercial, investment, state-to-state and foreign sovereign immunity-related matters. Hassan Arab focuses on civil and commercial dispute resolution. Jonathan Brooks’ practice focuses on representation of banking and lender clients, whilst Peter Wood is noted for his litigation expertise across a range of sectors. David Holloway, head of advocacy, recently joined from Outer Temple Chambers. Since publication, Sara Koleilat Aranjo left the firm.

Practice head(s):

Rita Jaballah; Thomas Snider

Other key lawyers:

Hassan Arab; Jonathan Brooks; Peter Wood

Key clients

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank

Oman Insurance Company

Mashreq Bank PSC

Khatib & Alami

Allen & Overy LLP

Allen & Overy LLP is well regarded for its dispute resolution practice, with a pre-eminent international arbitration offering. It has broad sector expertise, including in energy, infrastructure and construction, real estate, leisure, telecoms, and banking and finance. Practice head Yacine Francis has extensive experience handling joint venture and shareholder international arbitrations across the wider MENA region. Kirsten O’Connell has a particular focus on construction disputes across the infrastructure and energy sectors and senior associate Arash Koozehkanani specialises in financial services, corporate, and projects-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Yacine Francis

Other key lawyers:

Kirsten O’Connell; Arash Koozehkanani


‘A very efficient team, constantly thinking ahead and working to achieve the best result.’

‘Yacine Francis is very approachable and keen to get involved. He works well at the head of team, ensuring that the best and most rounded advice is being given.’

‘Arash Koozehkanani is one of the best senior associates – always on top of the material and giving practical and timely advice.’

Key clients


Work highlights

  • Acting for IDBI Bank in two related actions in the DIFC Courts, including a successful appeal before the DIFC Court of Appeal, and a successful subsequent DIFC Court of First Instance claim (which is now currently under appeal before the DIFC Court of Appeal).

Clyde & Co LLP

Clyde & Co LLP has a strong dispute resolution offering that covers both regional and cross-border litigation and arbitration. It is particularly well regarded for its shipping, insurance, technology, and construction sector expertise. Susie Abdel-Nabi heads the team and has significant experience representing clients in multi-jurisdictional commercial disputes. Mark Beswetherick has specialist expertise in professional liability defence matters and civil litigation, whilst Nassif Boumalhab focuses on shareholder, banking and finance, and financial crime disputes. Also notable are Keith Hutchison, who specialises in financial and investment disputes; Richard Bell, who has particular expertise with foreign direct investment-related disputes; and Alexandra Lester, who focuses on the TMT space.

Practice head(s):

Susie Abdel-Nabi

Other key lawyers:

Mark Beswetherick; Nassif BouMalhab; Keith Hutchison; Richard Bell; Alexandra Lester

Key clients

Larmag Holding BV


Work highlights

  • Acting for Larmag as claimant in the DIFC courts proceedings and subsequent judgment enforcement action in multiple jurisdictions.

DLA Piper

DLA Piper has a sizeable dispute resolution practice, covering a full spectrum of matters, including onshore and offshore litigation, international arbitration, and investigations. Andrew Mackenzie heads the group, and has significant experience handling construction, energy, financial services, and M&A disputes across the wider MENA region. Other key practitioners include international arbitration specialist Henry Quinlan and Wissam Dagher who has substantial expertise in onshore and offshore litigation, as well as in cross-border disputes. Suzannah Newboult is particularly active in oil and gas-related disputes and legal director Adam Bradshaw focuses on financial services, corporate and technology disputes.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Mackenzie

Other key lawyers:

Henry Quinlan; Wissam Dagher; Suzannah Newboult; Adam Bradshaw


‘The practice has an excellent global reputation and specializes in many fields. The team is very approachable.’

‘Suzannah Neboult, Andrew MacKenzie, and Malcolm Jezewski are very practical, down-to-earth, and extremely professional.’

‘The DLA litigation team in Dubai brings an excellent mix of vast experience in working with multinational companies while bringing at the same time a vast network and deep knowledge of the UAE legal system. They are excellent communicators and results driven.’

Key clients

Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile

Al Dahana


NCB Capital



HSBC Bank Middle East Limited



Specon LLC

Specon Saudi LLC

Clifford Chance

Clifford Chance has broad dispute resolution expertise, with experience representing clients in the UAE local courts, DIFC, and ADGM, as well as in arbitration and various forms of ADR. Practice head James Abbott has significant expertise handling cross-border banking and financial litigation, which includes fraud and asset tracing, sanctions, joint venture, and shareholder disputes. Paul Coates specialises in construction disputes, as well as international and investment treaty arbitrations. Senior associates Prachi Trivedi and Arun Visweswaran are also noted for their international arbitration and litigation expertise.

Practice head(s):

James Abbott

Other key lawyers:

Paul Coates; Prachi Trivedi; Arun Visweswaran


‘The firm has a number of huge selling points. The leadership and partners are excellent, but so are the more junior fee earners. They are extremely intelligent and well-resourced individuals, and are very knowledgeable about construction disputes.’

‘Paul Coates is very charming, hardworking and highly intelligent. He has a good understanding of the law and, in particular, strategy.’

‘James Abbott leads the group and he’s an outstanding litigator. His strategic thinking is unparalleled and he is extremely user-friendly and down-to-earth.’

‘Bethany Lightley-Hunt is an up-and-coming associate to watch out for. Clients adore her commitment and hands-on approach.’

‘Arun Visweswaran has an excellent eye for detail.’

‘Great team that enjoy dealing with complex problems and breaking new ground.’

‘James Abbott is very relaxed and easy to work with, nothing ever flusters him and he always seems to have the correct answer at the top of his head.’

‘Arun Visweswaran is able to give thoughtful, practical advice and has a great experience dealing with DIFC Court matters.’


Dentons’ UAE dispute resolution team has particular sector expertise in banking and finance, shareholder and corporate governance, hospitality, white-collar criminal defence, construction, real estate, and healthcare. The team is co-led by Andrew Cheung, who has significant experience handling cross-border commercial arbitrations and DIFC court claims, and Dean Ryburn, who specialises in construction and infrastructure-related disputes. Middle East managing partner Alastair Young focuses on engineering and construction disputes. Senior associates Faris Shehabi and Zahra Rose Khawaja are also noted for their commercial disputes expertise.

Practice head(s):

Andrew Cheung; Dean Ryburn

Other key lawyers:

Alastair Young; Faris Shehabi; Zahra Rose Khawaja

Key clients

The State Bank of Mauritius

Haulotte Middle East FZE

Work highlights

  • Advised The State Bank of Mauritius and successfully obtained a finding of fraud before the DIFC Court in December 2021.
  • Acting for the UAE branch of Haulotte Group SA, a major French aerial work platform manufacturer, in a dispute against its UAE distributor and agent United Gulf Equipment Rental LLC.

Hadef & Partners LLC

Hadef & Partners LLC is well regarded for its expertise both in local courts and the DIFC. The team is co-headed by Abdulrahman Juma and Salih Ahnaish, both of whom act for a range of local and international corporations, as well as UAE government entities. Adrian Chadwick has broad expertise, covering litigation, arbitration, and ADR. Basil Siddiqi specialises in disputes in the real estate and construction sectors, whilst Walid Azzam focuses on cross-border commercial and corporate disputes. Zarghona Fazal is experienced in contractual and shareholder disputes.

Practice head(s):

Abdulrahman Juma; Salih Ahnaish

Other key lawyers:

Adrian Chadwick; Basil Siddiqi; Walid Azzam; Zarghona Fazal; Karim Mahmoud; Matthew Page


‘An excellent choice for disputes, with both an international and domestic element. They are reasonably priced and highly competent.’

‘Adrian Chadwick is a seasoned campaigner, being a veteran of a large number of disputes in the DIFC Courts and Dubai World Tribunal.’

‘Zarghona Fazal is technically excellent. Equally at home in court and arbitration.’

Key clients

Caterpillar Financial Services (Dubai) Limited

IDBI Bank Limited

Work highlights

  • Advised Caterpillar Financial Services (Dubai) Limited, a Fortune 500 company, on ongoing contentious matters arising out of financing provided to construction contractors in the total amount of USD20,000,000.
  • Acted for IDBI Bank (DIFC branch) in obtaining judgment against Horizon Energy in the DIFC Courts for approximately USD39 million and obtained a separate judgment against the owners of the vessel for approximately USD47 million.


HFW has broad sector expertise, though it is particularly well regarded for its shipping, insurance, and aviation disputes practice. Yaman Al Hawamdeh heads the firm’s Arabic litigation offering, specialising in regional disputes and local court litigation. Nick Braganza heads the commercial litigation group, with substantial experience handling matters in the DIFC, ADGM and UAE onshore courts. Richard Gimblett has significant experience of aviation, insurance, and commercial litigation. Charles Cockrell is noted for his aviation and regulatory practice, whilst legal director Rami Al Tal focuses on local civil, commercial and criminal disputes.

Practice head(s):

Nick Braganza; Yaman Al Hawamdeh; Richard Gimblett

Other key lawyers:

Charles Cockrell; Rami Al Tal


‘What standouts in this firm is their professional attitude and commitment.’

‘Nick Braganza is very professional, dedicated, well-informed of the DIFC law and produces high quality work.’

Key clients

National Bank of Fujairah

Merrill Lynch International

Expresso Telecom Group Limited

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC

Tasneem Cars – Import & Export Enterprises LLC

Al Arabia Bunkering Company

National Bank of Kuwait

Aegis Resources DMCC

Etihad Airways

Aquarius Global Limited

Work highlights

  • Representing Bank of America Merrill Lynch and successfully defended a claim in the DIFC Court’s Technology and Construction division for USD 118m.
  • Acting for Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC in respect of a fraud that contributed to the collapse of the FTSE 100 listed NMC Health plc which was the UAE’s largest provider of private healthcare services.
  • Acting for a logistics provider in litigation that resulted in a five-day trial in the DIFC Courts against a DIFC bank that effected a fraudulent transfer of funds after the client had been the victim of a cyber phishing hack.

King & Wood Mallesons

King & Wood Mallesons acts for government entities, high-net-worth individuals, shareholders, and corporates across the full spectrum of commercial, financial and construction disputes. Practice head Joanne Strain is well regarded for her international commercial arbitration and common law litigation. Parnika Chaturvedi was recently promoted to partner and is noted for her experience of cross-border disputes across a wide array of sectors. Daniel Xu focuses on construction-related disputes, whilst Brendan Palmer is experienced in a variety of commercial disputes. Tim Taylor KC left the firm.

Practice head(s):

Joanne Strain

Other key lawyers:

Parnika Chaturvedi; Daniel Xu; Brendan Palmer


‘King & Wood Mallesons have an incredibly talented team who are well-poised to deal with the most complex and challenging international arbitrations in the Middle East. They always retain a practical and commercial perspective whilst being outstanding legal strategists.’

‘Joanne Strain is an exceptionally talented lawyer. Incisive, clear and thoughtful.’

‘Parnika Chaturvedi is a brilliant lawyer and gives measured, realistic advice, but has a creative flair that inspires.’

‘One of the most diverse teams in Dubai, with Joanne Strain and Parnika Chaturvedi. They are absolute trojans when it comes to work.’

‘This is a team that has a rare combination of legal skill, organisational discipline, and personal warmth. They are a delight to work with.’

‘Joanne Strain is committed, unflappable, and great in a crisis; she has excellent judgment and always knows the right question to ask.’

‘Parnika Chaturvedi is immensely knowledgeable and insightful, and always has complete command of the papers.’

‘Joanne Strain, Daniel Xu, and Parnika Chaturvedi make a highly professional team, have a pleasant attitude with clients and are extremely knowledgeable of the local laws and courts practice.’

Key clients


Prasanth Manghat

Former senior management of Finablr Plc

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented Prasanth Manghat, former CEO of NMC Group, in proceedings commenced by Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank in the English High Court, and was able to set aside a USD 1 billion freezing order in the English Court, and obtain a stay of proceedings on jurisdiction grounds.
  • Advised NEOM on drafting and reviewing a range of laws, regulations and rules, which would form the legal architecture of NEOM.
  • Representing the former senior manager of Finablr concerning matters arising out of: (i) placement of Finablr Plc in administration; (ii) suspension of trading in Finablr by the London Stock Exchange; (iii) placement of UAE Exchange under the direct supervision of UAE Central Bank; and (iv) proposed sale of Finablr subsidiaries.

Norton Rose Fulbright

The dispute resolution team at Norton Rose Fulbright has strong on-the-ground expertise, covering a broad spectrum of sectors. Paul Stothard heads the group and has extensive experience of international arbitration, as does Orlando Vidal. Deirdre Walker specialises in commercial fraud disputes, primarily acting for financial institutions, major corporates, and high-net-worth individuals and Yaroslav Klimov has particular expertise handling cross-border disputes involving CIS parties. Shabnam Karim focuses on liability and insurance disputes and Aarti Thadani has specialist experience in the real estate, construction and infrastructure sectors.

Practice head(s):

Paul Stothard

Other key lawyers:

Deirdre Walker; Yaroslav Klimov; Shabnam Karim; Aarti Thadani; Alexander Field


‘Intelligence and business acumen of partners. Dedication of associates to clients’ work.’

‘Paul Stothard and Alexander Field both stand out for their brilliance, eloquence and business acumen.’

Key clients

Harlan Group for Civil Rights


American International Group

Pinsent Masons LLP

Pinsent Masons LLP handles a broad spectrum of a commercial and construction arbitration and litigation matters. Damian Crosse has extensive experience handling litigious matters in local and international courts. Mark Raymont heads the construction disputes offering and Seema Bono specialises in international commercial disputes, including cyber and technology-related matters. Also notable are Nick Tolley, who focuses on construction disputes, Amelia Cave, who has particular experience in the retail and technology sectors, and Sammy Nanneh, who has banking and finance-related disputes expertise.

Practice head(s):

Damian Crosse; Mark Raymont

Other key lawyers:

Seema Bono; Nick Tolley; Amelia Cave; Sammy Nanneh; Faisal Attia


‘They combine a real knowledge and experience of heavy-weight commercial litigation, with a particular appreciation of the features of litigation in the region.’

‘Damian Crosse is a fantastic team head, real gravitas and experience with a great commercial nose for the right course to take.’

‘Seema Bono is a fantastically hard worker who is already a go-to for big commercial disputes in the region.’

Key clients


Dr Kamal Akkach

Infracare Maintenance and Cleaning Services LLC

Work highlights

  • Acting for SKAT on the largest case in the DIFC Courts and Dubai Courts (SKAT (the Danish Customs and Tax Administration) v Sanjay Shah & Others), involving USD 2 billion claims against multiple defendants.
  • Advising Dr Kamal Akkach, who founded the successful HealthBay healthcare business in Dubai, on DIFC Court proceedings with Anglo Arabian, which is owned by a major private equity player in the UAE market.

Trowers & Hamlins LLP

Trowers & Hamlins LLP’s international dispute resolution offering is led by Matthew Showler, who has significant experience acting in shareholder, commercial, banking and finance, fraud, TMT, and employment disputes in the region. The team also has experience in the DIFC, ADGM, and onshore Dubai courts, as well as in the ICC, LCIA and UNCITRAL. Other key practitioners include Cheryl Cairns and Karie Akeelah, both of whom specialise in contentious construction matters. Senior associate Daniel Smith is noted for his experience in commercial dispute resolution, including in fraud claims.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Showler

Other key lawyers:

Cheryl Cairns; Karie Akeelah; Daniel Smith


‘Matthew Showler has been doing work in the UAE for over a decade and has a wealth of experience. He has been involved in a number of firsts in the DIFC Courts and is equally at home in arbitration.’

‘Knowledgeable, focused, friendly, timely and relevant.’

‘Matthew Showler delivers an excellent service, focused advice and is a strategic expert.’

‘Matthew Showler sees straight to the heart of any dispute and can immediately identify the strategic implications of any event in the proceedings. A brilliant tactical thinker with a remarkable ability to cut through the detail.’

‘Very prompt and complete responses. Adaptable and able to incorporate client input.’

‘The partners support clients’ corporate goals, which has led them to winning and retaining long term clients.’

‘Matthew Showler is a highly recommended arbitrator, and a talented negotiator.’

‘The team is very knowledgeable and are very supportive of the client. They consider client requirements above everything else.’

Key clients

Sandra Holdings Limited

The Administrators of the International Banking Corporation

SpaceCom International LLC

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

Pearl Petroleum Co Ltd

Sayacorp B.S.C.

Power and Integrated Projects Company

First Energy Bank B.S.C.

GEMS Education Limited

Coffee Planet Group

John Cockerill Group

Export – Import Bank Of Malaysia Berhad

Yousif Alkooheji & Bros

AAL Group Limited

Jonathan Ing

Moon Iron & Steel Co SAOC

His Excellency Sadiq Marafi

NEBA Financial Solutions

Accuracy Middle East Advisory Ltd

Miclyn Midad Marine Company Limited

Indus International FZC

Dantar Technology Consultancies Company W.L.L

Trade X ME LLC

Petromin Corporation

Partners Group


Dalma Capital Management Limited

Saudi Selevision Company

Permodalan Nasional Berhad

Work highlights

  • Advising the Administrator of The International Banking Corporation in its claims against Ahmed Hamad Algosaibi Brothers Company (AHAB) worth USD 2.5 billion and involving highly complex multi jurisdictional proceedings.
  • Advising Sandra Holdings Ltd in complex proceedings before the DIFC Courts. This case is worth in excess of USD 200 million and involves complex fraud allegations and a worldwide freezing and disclosure order has been granted by the DIFC Courts.
  • Acting for Sadiq Marafi in his claim against his ex-wife and associated family companies for over EUR 150m involving proceedings across a number of jurisdictions and in which a worldwide freezing order has been obtained for the client.

Addleshaw Goddard

Addleshaw Goddard has a broad commercial disputes offering, with particular expertise in the financial services space, which includes handling fraud claims and contentious insolvency and restructuring proceedings. The team is headed by Shane Jury from Dubai, who has substantial experience acting in commercial disputes in the region. Also notable are managing associates Antonia Grieve-Yates, who primarily focuses on financial services litigation matters, and Emma Tormey, who has technology-related disputes expertise.

Practice head(s):

Shane Jury

Other key lawyers:

Antonia Grieve-Yates; Emma Tormey; Charlotte Davis


‘They have enormous experience and some of the best litigators in the market, which makes them a great value team.’

‘An excellent team conducting banking and financial services litigation in the UAE, and in particular in the DIFC at the highest level. The partners are hands-on and proactive, the associates are intelligent and reliable.’

‘Shane Jury is an outstanding up-and-coming partner in the region, a delight to work with, and great at inspiring his team.’

‘Antonia Grieve-Yates is a very hardworking associate, diligent and enthusiastic.’

‘Charlotte Davis has really hit the ground running; a good, reliable associate.’

‘The team is knowledgeable, approachable and highly efficient. They relieve the burden when dealing with disputes, providing practical and timely advice.’

‘Emma Tormey is not just approachable and knowledgeable, but also extremely efficient. I felt confident that I was in capable hands.’

‘Shane Jury is the standout member of the team. He is exceptionally intelligent, thorough, and meticulous with detail.’

Key clients

Emirates NBD Bank P.J.S.C.

HSBC Bank Middle East Limited


ICIC Bank Limited

Union Bank of India

Bank of Jordan Company

National Bank of Bahrain BSC

Ahli United Bank BSC

Commercial Bank of Dubai PSC

Warba Bank KSCP

Asif Mahmood

Work highlights

  • Acting in a $300 million DIFC Court claim for a syndicate of 9 international banks (including HSBC) and Emirates NBD (as agent) to recover sums loaned to the KBBO CPG Group.
  • Acting for an individual in a GBP £5,000,000 action commenced in the High Court of England (Queen’s Bench Division) against Dubai-based company ‘The Big Bus Company Ltd’.

Afridi & Angell

Afridi & Angell’s dispute resolution practice is led by Haider Afridi, who has extensive experience handling automotive, construction, real estate, and financial services-related disputes in the region. Beyond that, the wider team demonstrates commercial, banking and employment litigation expertise, as well as regularly handling real estate and construction-related arbitration matters. Chatura Randeniya specialises in financial services and shipping disputes. Mevan Bandara is noted for his cross-border disputes expertise, whilst Nazim Hashim focuses on civil and criminal litigation mandates.

Practice head(s):

Haider Afridi

Other key lawyers:

Chatura Randeniya; Mevan Bandara; Nazim Hashim; Stuart Walker; Sulakshana Senanayake


‘Great knowledge of the market place.’

‘Stuart Walker is very responsive and has good judgement.’

‘Great use of technology and a really strong team able to work seamlessly with external counsel and technical experts.’

‘Haider Afridi, Chatura Randeniya and Mevan Bandara are all supremely competent, and have great attention to detail and a laser-like ability to hone in on the true issues in a case. Not only are all of them exceptionally able, but they are a true delight to work with.’

‘Great commitment to the client; kind and professional.’

Sulakshana Senanayake is an associate who is extremely hardworking and one to watch.’

Bird & Bird

The dispute resolution practice at Bird & Bird handles commercial disputes across a range of sectors, including telecoms, energy, banking, hospitality, insolvency, and aviation. It demonstrates both litigation and arbitration expertise, and also handles fraud investigations. Practice head Lucas Pitts acts for Middle East-based conglomerates, multi-nationals, and high-net-worth individuals in commercial and insolvency disputes. Senior associate Yannick Hefti has expertise in sports, art, and technology-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Lucas Pitts

Other key lawyers:

Yannick Hefti


‘They are excellent and recommended.’

‘The one thing that made this practice truly unique was the work was carried out pro bono. This is a testament to Bird & Bird, their beliefs, and how important supporting the community is.’

‘Lucas Pitts’ knowledge, trusted advice, delicacy in handling the tricky legal issues at hand, and strategy are standout.’

‘Lucas Pitts’ knowledge not only around the legal aspects, but also governance and schooling, were second-to-none.’

‘Lucas Pitts is a commercially-focused lawyer who is able to provide legal advice in the context of the business drivers for clients.’

Key clients

Jebel Ali School

Stormharbour Securities LP

Al Falah Group

Sheikh Alesayi Will Establishment

Work highlights

  • Acted for the Jebel Ali School in respect of a pro-bono DIAC arbitration filed by Emirates REIT PLC arising from a lease dispute and unpaid rent.
  • Advised Al Falah Group in respect of its AED 1.2 billion claim against a major government funded real estate development company arising out of the breach of a long term concrete supply agreement before the Abu Dhabi courts.
  • Acted for Stormharbour Securities in its USD13 million claim before the DIFC Court.

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner’s disputes practice focuses on the construction, engineering and infrastructure sectors. Richard Davies heads the team, with extensive experience handling real estate and construction disputes in the region. Charles Lilley has been particularly active in representing Chinese contractors based in the region and is supported by Justin Jie Zhang. Other key practitioners include counsel Anna Gee, who has international arbitration expertise, and Richard Dupay, who has significant cross-border disputes experience.

Practice head(s):

Richard Davies

Other key lawyers:

Charles Lilley; Justin Jie Zhang; Anna Gee; Richard Dupay


‘An excellent firm, with unrivalled, and localized, industry expertise.’

‘Charles Lilley is extremely knowledgeable in his field, pragmatic in approach and has a strong ability to break down complex issues into easily consumable advice, allowing effective commercial decision-making.’

‘Richard Dupay is prepared to go the extra mile in meeting deadlines, and proactive in advising on issues that haven’t been specifically asked.’

Key clients

J&H Emirates LLC

ALEC Engineering & Contracting LLC

Stallion Partners

Power China Huadong Engineering Group

China National Chemical Engineering Dubai LLC

Binghatti Holdings

Dr Othman Abdullah Alswayeh

China National Aero-Tech International Engineering Corporation

Yoma Land

Meeyahta Developments Limited

Work highlights

  • Advising China National Aero-Technology International Engineering Corporation (Dubai Branch) as project counsel from the beginning of the project to completion for the Cityland Mall in Dubai.
  • Advising an Investor on multiple related disputes arising out of his investment in a DIFC-registered Real Estate Investment Trust.
  • Advising J&H Emirates LLC on various complex and high value disputes arising out of the Midfield Terminal building at Abu Dhabi Airport.

DWF Middle East LLP

DWF Middle East LLP acts for regional banks, global financial institutions, blue-chip US companies and global oil and gas companies in a range of litigious matters. Managing partner James Fox leads the team, and has substantial experience handling asset recovery, construction and oil and gas litigation, and international arbitration matters. Also noted is Slava Kiryushin, who specialises in energy and construction-related disputes. Legal director Donal Scott is also noted for his commercial litigation and international arbitration experience.

Practice head(s):

James Fox

Other key lawyers:

Slava Kiryushin; Donal Scott; Jessica Stadwick


‘The DWF team is highly knowledgeable on local court matters. They are always responsive, clear and efficient in their advice. Their advice and predictions on local court proceedings have always been proven accurate.’

‘James Fox has been operating in the country for many years and has built considerable experience. He gives practical, innovative legal advice, and his main differentiator is his focus on efficiency and the job at hand.’

‘Slava Kiryushin is an industry specialist but with a very astute disputes angle. He works incredibly well under pressure and what makes him stand out is his commercial understanding of business needs.’

Key clients

The Saudi British Bank

Cesfin Ventures LLC

Neoma Private Equity Fund IV

Cerner Middle East

Emirates NBD Bank PJSC

Smiths Detection

Work highlights

  • Acting for Neoma Private Equity Fund IV in an auditor liability claim against KPMG worth c. USD 250 million before the Dubai Courts relating to the fallout of the collapse of the Abraaj Group.
  • Acting for Cesfin Ventures LLC in several sets of proceedings before the Dubai, Abu Dhabi, DIFC, Bahraini, Moroccan and English Courts relating to the enforcement of two New York seated arbitral awards worth a combined total of c. USD 150 million.
  • Representing the Saudi British Bank in two high profile proceedings currently being litigated before the English Commercial Court – one against a Spanish company guarantor for unpaid sums borrowed by its Saudi-based subsidiary worth c. GBP 6 million, and the other against an individual in relation to personal guarantees worth c. GBP 28 million.

Eversheds Sutherland LLP

Eversheds Sutherland LLP handles a broad array commercial disputes, and is experienced in representing clients in the UAE, DIFC and ADGM courts. Practice head Rebecca Copley has substantial experience handling financial services-related disputes. Nasser Ali Khasawneh specialises in disputes in the intellectual property, technology, and media space and Paul Taylor focuses on contentious construction and engineering matters. Shalagh Massingham is also noted, and has broad expertise covering local and international commercial and construction disputes.

Practice head(s):

Rebecca Copley

Other key lawyers:

Nasser Ali Khasawneh; Paul Taylor; Shalagh Massingham; Gillian Flannighan


‘A really strong team that has great depth of knowledge of the Middle East.’

‘Paul Taylor always provides clear strategic direction, and is able gently to guide clients through difficult issues.’

‘Shalagh Massingham is an absolute firecracker of a lawyer. Brilliant levels of energy and enthusiasm, and a really hard worker. She has real knowledge across the commercial and construction sphere.’

‘Gillian Flannighan is a really strong up-and-coming associate. She can be trusted to get the answer right first time.’

‘Energetic, thoughtful and experienced team with a very hands-on approach and long Middle Eastern experience.’

‘High calibre lawyers with extensive experience in the GCC region.’

‘Rebecca Copley is highly responsive and provides accurate advice.’

‘Nasser Ali Khasawneh is highly supportive and understands the clients’ businesses.’

Key clients

Philip Morris International Management S.A.

Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC

Arab Bank PLC

Baker McKenzie LLP

Baker McKenzie LLP regularly advises on both regional and cross-border litigation and arbitration matters, and is particularly active in the banking and finance, criminal and white-collar criminal defence, technology and tax spaces. Luka Kristovic-Blazevic leads the practice, specialising in construction disputes.

Practice head(s):

Luka Kristovic-Blazevic


‘The litigation and arbitration team provide excellent, client-focused advice and have a deep knowledge of international arbitration and the local market.’

‘One of the top teams in the UAE for dealing with complex commercial arbitration.’

Key clients

Julius Baer

Dubai Refreshments Company



Mashreq Bank

Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority

Majid Al Futtaim

Standard Charter Bank

Ekar and Polymath

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP has a full-service disputes offering, with particular expertise in the construction, financial services, energy and oil and gas sectors. It also has capabilities in corporate crime and investigations. The team is co-led by managing partner Stuart Paterson, who specialises in advising regional and international clients in financial services-related disputes and corporate investigations, and Nick Oury, who has a particular focus on international arbitration in the construction and infrastructure space.

Practice head(s):

Stuart Paterson; Nick Oury

Other key lawyers:

Janine Mallis

Key clients

Dragon Oil



Amana Middle East Holdings Limited

Buharia International Holdings Limited

SMS Holdings Limited

Leighton Offshore Pte Ltd

BP Plc


Sumitomo Corporation

BAE Systems

Tihama Power Generation Company Ltd

Jones Day

The global disputes group at Jones Day is led by Sheila Shadmand, who has substantial experience handling commercial litigation and arbitration in the region, with an active presence in the DIFC courts. The team also demonstrates cross-border dispute resolution expertise. Other key practitioners include Pierre Heitzmann, who has a particular focus on international arbitration, and Heather Martin, who has expertise in white-collar criminal disputes and regulatory enforcement matters. Jodie Martyndale-Howard is a new arrival with a focus on construction, project and engineering disputes.

Practice head(s):

Sheila Shadmand

Other key lawyers:

Pierre Heitzmann; Heather Martin; Jodie Martyndale-Howard


‘Great leadership with Sheila Shadmand, but also great depth. The team are practical, commercial, have a good mix of actual in-house experiences prior to joining the firm and are a strong team.’

‘Sheila Shadmand is a superstar – she will do anything that she can to help.’

‘Heather Martin is commercially-focused and brings significant in-house experience to the table. She is also very detail-focused, and she really knows her stuff.’

Key clients


MedImpact Healthcare Systems, Inc.

Abdulhameed Dhia Jafar, Founder & Chairman of Crescent Group

Alta Trading UK Limited

Commercial Bank of Dubai


As specialists in the insurance industry, Kennedys is particularly well regarded for its contentious expertise in this space. Peter Ellingham, who has extensive experience handling insurance-related disputes, and Celine Abi Habib Kanakri, who has a broad international arbitration practice, co-lead the group. Mark Wilson specialises in construction and construction insurance-related dispute resolution. Sean Angle recently joined from Stephenson Harwood Middle East LLP.

Practice head(s):

Celine Abi Habib Kanakri; Peter Ellingham

Other key lawyers:

Mark Wilson; Khalil Mechantaf; Sean Angle


‘The team is well versed with the insurance laws of the region and are always looking to find the best solution out of court and control their costs.’

‘Peter Ellingham and Rishi Sengupta are always willing to clarify the points and have a discussion on the claims. This helps clients as it opens up discussions to reach a good conclusion.’

Key clients

ExecuJet Middle East MRO Services FZCO

Global Aerospace Underwriting Managers Limited

XL Insurance Company SE

Swiss Re International SE

Starr International (Europe) Ltd

Allianz Global Corporate & Speciality SE

Work highlights

  • Advising the professional indemnity insurers and reinsurers of a UAE design company, which is one of many defendants, in subrogation proceedings brought by the insurers of a large hotel in Dubai that was destroyed by fire.
  • Advising the Dubai branch of an international insurer in respect of claims made under two property all risk insurance policies, one business interruption insurance policy and one third-party liability insurance policy with the same insured, following a January 2019 fire at the warehouse and plastic recycling factory of the insured in Dubai.
  • Acting for the claimant in a number of claims including breach of warranties, fraud and misrepresentation in relation to the correctness of financial information disclosed for the purpose of the sale of a group of companies, arising from the sale and purchase of shares in a UAE based holding company active in the telecommunication industry.

King & Spalding LLP

King & Spalding LLP’s global disputes team is headed by Edward Kehoe from New York, though key practitioners in Dubai include Ben Williams who is noted for his expertise in commercial litigation and arbitration. Senior associate Guillaume Hess focuses on disputes relating to the construction and operation of major projects and Kateryna Frolova has experience of energy arbitrations. Samaa Haridi recently joined from Hogan Lovells (United Arab Emirates) LLP.

Practice head(s):

Edward Kehoe

Other key lawyers:

Ben Williams; Guillaume Hess; Kateryna Frolova; Samaa Haridi; Sarah Walker


‘King & Spalding’s dispute resolution team are very forward-leaning with their clients. They dig into all the details and evaluate the risks and mitigation factors openly with their clients.’

‘The lawyers are direct and to-the-point in their conversations and do not waste time’

‘Ben Williams has his hand on all matters concerning the case and people involved.’

‘Sarah Walker brings a great wealth of experience from litigation in the UK and the Middle East.’

‘King & Spalding have a great local team with support out of the UK.’

‘Sarah Walker has a wealth of experience and a great bedside manner with clients.’

Key clients

Hexagon Holdings (Cayman) Limited

Western Union


International AirFinance Corporation


Fatima Group

Midwest Fertilizer Company LLC

Pak Arab Fertilizers Limited

Reed Smith

Reed Smith’s global commercial disputes and international arbitration group is co-led by Michelle Nelson, who primarily acts in oil and gas, construction, and infrastructure-related disputes, and Waseem Khokhar, who focuses on corporate and commercial disputes. Sachin Kerur is also noted for his construction disputes expertise. Recent joiners include James Willn, who was previously at Stephenson Harwood, and Antonia Birt, who joined from Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP.

Practice head(s):

Michelle Nelson; Waseem Khokhar

Other key lawyers:

Sachin Kerur; James Willn; Antonia Birt; Finlay Donaldson; Soham Panchamiya


‘Reed Smith has an excellent team of lawyers who have a wealth of experience of international arbitration. They have in-depth legal knowledge, but at the same time, are strategic and commercial in their approach to achieving their clients’ objectives.’

‘Michelle Nelson is outstanding. She is a brilliant lawyer, a superb advocate and a fantastic manager of a team who is able to bring out the best in everyone.’

‘James Willn is truly exceptional in terms of his Middle Eastern knowledge and grasp of local laws and procedures.’

Shearman & Sterling LLP

Shearman & Sterling LLP's team handles range of international arbitration matters, covering both commercial and investment treaty-related matters, though it has particular sector expertise in relation to energy, construction, mining, and telecoms disputes. Practice head Alex Bevan is well regarded for his international arbitration expertise. Also noted is David Hume, who was recently promoted to partner and has a broad commercial and construction disputes practice, with rights of audience before the DIFC and ADGM courts.

Practice head(s):

Alex Bevan

Other key lawyers:

David Hume


‘They have the ability to quickly understand the dynamics in clients’ businesses, and to effectively communicate with every level of the internal hierarchy.’

‘Strategic farsightedness and superb drafting skills.’

‘Alex Bevan is easy to work and get along with, and he has extremely deep knowledge of the matter.’

‘David Hume has exceptional drafting skills, is up-to-speed at all times, and never off-guard.’

‘Shearman & Sterling have a longstanding and deep understanding of the Abu Dhabi market.’

‘Alex Bevan is a star in the market.’

Key clients

ENKA Inşaat ve Sanayi A.Ş

Abu Dhabi Global Market

Work highlights

  • Representing Turkish contractor ENKA Inşaat ve Sanayi AŞ in an ICC arbitration in London against certain entities within U.S. insurance group Chubb.
  • Assisting ADGM in developing the framework and resources for it to become a leading arbitral jurisdiction.

Stephenson Harwood Middle East LLP

Stephenson Harwood Middle East LLP‘s commercial litigation team is led by Nick Sharratt, who has significant experience handling international arbitration, litigation, asset tracing, enforcements and investigations in the region. Phil Clarke has particular expertise advising on disputes with a regulatory element, while Mark Lakin specialises in shipping, commodities and fraud-related disputes. Rania Tadros recently joined from Ince & Co.

Practice head(s):

Nick Sharratt

Other key lawyers:

Phil Clarke; Mark Lakin; Rania Tadros


‘Very commercial and business focused; it is a very flexible team of big hitters, so they can adjust to fit any size of dispute.’

‘Rania Tadros is lightening quick, seeing around the problem and plotting a course to the solution.’

‘Nick Sharratt is energetic and knowledgeable.’

Key clients

Grant Thornton



T Private Capital Limited


Primal Capital and Housing Finance Limited

MOG Holding Limited

Aggregates Manufacturing Trading

Svitzer Salvage BV.

Sahara Energy Resource Ltd

Work highlights

  • Acting for a UAE government entity operating in the construction sector in relation to a dispute with a global contractor relating to a number of technical issues, including the extension of time claims, the right to delay penalties and other matters connected with the construction of a new flagship hotel and residential tower in Dubai, UAE.
  • Acting for Grant Thornton UK LLP in their capacity as exclusive claims advisor to the Asset Recovery Fund which has purchased a portfolio of non-performing loans a from a major international bank in the UAE.
  • Advising a global leading engineering company that specialises in electric vehicle charging solutions, process automation and robotics and discrete automation in relation to the construction, supply and installation of charging equipment for electrical buses for the Qatar 2022 World Cup.


AMERELLER handles a broad array of disputes, with particular expertise in real estate and construction-related matters. Alexander Lutgendorf heads the group and has significant experience of cross-border arbitration and commercial litigation, as well as ADR methods. Christopher Gunson and Jonathan Noble are noted for their expertise in commercial litigation and white-collar criminal defence proceedings.

Practice head(s):

Alexander Lütgendorf

Other key lawyers:

Christopher Gunson; Jonathan Noble


‘Small but nimble practice, and very responsive.’

‘Alexander Lütgendorf is very experienced in the UAE, and really brings that experience to matters.’

‘Alexander Lütgendorf has real arbitration pedigree in his background. He is extremely responsive and committed to achieving the best possible outcome for his clients.’

Key clients


thyssenkrupp Materials Trading

Doppelmayr Garaventa Group

Waagner Biro Bridge Services Group


Fabtech International Group


Baker Botts L.L.P.

Baker Botts L.L.P. is particularly active in real estate, commercial and investor-state arbitration and DIFC court proceedings. The team is led by Philip Punwar from Dubai, who has extensive experience handling cross-border disputes, with particular expertise acting in disputes involving private and governmental entities, real-estate developments, foreign investment, and commercial arrangements.

Practice head(s):

Philip Punwar

Other key lawyers:

Dorine Farah; Dustin Appel

Key clients

Pinsent Mason LLP


Republic of Iraq

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP has expertise in both local and international arbitration and litigation. Patrick Gearon heads the Middle East litigation and dispute resolution offering, and specialises in banking, IP, insolvency, and professional negligence disputes. Ghassan El Daye heads the civil law litigation group, whilst Sara Sheffield leads the offshore litigation practice. Peter Smith is also noted for his civil and commercial disputes expertise. John Lewis was a new arrival in early 2023 from Clyde & Co LLP.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Gearon; Ghassan El Daye; Sara Sheffield

Other key lawyers:

Peter Smith; Rachel Warren; John Lewis


‘Very strong lead in Sara Sheffield. She is technically very able and a fierce opponent.’

‘True expertise across the Middle East region.’

‘Sara Sheffield is one of the most dedicated lawyers I know. She has built her practice and reputation in the regional market and internationally through the quality of her work. Not only an extraordinary counsel for her clients, but also an amazing leader.’

‘The CRS team are a group of very capable and intelligent lawyers. They are particularly strong and adept at handling disputes with cross-border elements.’

‘Sara Sheffield is an extremely dedicated and innovative partner, who is tremendously effective at understanding her client’s goals and finding a way to achieve those.’

‘Rachel Warren is very good at handling complex and long running disputes, particularly in financial regulation and investigations.’

‘Peter Smith is an excellent lawyer, with superb drafting skills and who always has a detailed understanding of his cases.’

‘Professional team, very responsive and can work fast when required. Ghassan El Daye has extensive experience in litigation.’

Key clients


FAL Oil Company Limited

Al Soor Investments LLC

Sari Investments LLC

Al Baraka Investments LLC

IGPL General Trading LLC

Katharine Fagerlind

Work highlights

  • Advising Huobi OTC DMCC, a UAE cryptocurrency trader, in a claim before the technology and construction division of the DIFC Court against a DIFC investment company for its alleged failure to prevent the loss of a significant amount of Bitcoin during a sale and purchase transaction.
  • Acting for Al Soor Investments LLC, Sari Investments LLC and Al Baraka Investments LLC, three prominent onshore investment advisory companies, in a DIFC Court financial product mis-selling claim against a multinational Swiss private Bank and its DIFC branch.
  • Advising FAL Oil Company Limited in a matter that arises out of an agreement between our client and the Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority for the provision of petroleum products, and successfully obtained judgment against SEWA in the sum of AED 1.7 billion together with interest at 1% per year.

Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP

Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP has particular expertise representing sovereign nations in investor-state arbitrations, alongside a broad commercial disputes offering. Practice head Charles Buderi specialises in disputes relating to public international and state law. Antonia Birt recently left the firm.

Practice head(s):

Charles Buderi

Other key lawyers:

Jeremy Miocevic; Matthew Harley


‘One of the biggest strengths this team has is the diverse individuals that specialize in different aspects of the field. This makes them prepared for any case with an expert ready in that field.’

‘They are quick to take action and come up with original ideas and perspectives outside the box.’

‘Clients value their work ethic and their approaches to different cases. They use their expert skills and approach cases with resourcefulness and original ideas.’

‘They are a group of quick-witted individuals, whenever there is a problem they are quick to take effective action.’

‘A well diversified team, carefully listen to the client’s point of view, and reflect a sincere desire to protect the best interests of the client.’

‘Jeremy Miocevic and Matthew Harley are helpful, knowledgeable, and sincere in their advice. They have always reflected a high level of professionalism, competence, and understanding of client’s needs.’

Key clients

Chicago Maintenance and Construction Co LLC

Donna Benton

UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Shamel Food Company

Work highlights

  • Representing a joint venture composed of a major Italian conglomerate in over US$525 million ICC arbitration proceedings concerning a project for the construction of a stadium for the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
  • Representing an ultra-high-net-worth Emirati individual in an LCIA arbitration against a multinational publicly listed construction company and its Middle Eastern subsidiary. The dispute relates to interpretation of a complex suite of agreements. Following a merits hearing in March 2022, the tribunal delivered an award in the client’s favour.
  • Representing an African State in over US$326 million LCIA commercial arbitration proceedings related to a major tourism hotel and marina development project.

Ince & Co

The team at Ince & Co has local and international contentious expertise, handling disputes concerning the financial services, telecoms, aviation, construction, real estate, transport, and international trade sectors. Rabih Tabbara heads the group and has significant experience advising on construction, real estate, and energy disputes. Managing partner Mohamed El Hawawy is noted for his UAE courts expertise.

Practice head(s):

Rabih Tabbara

Other key lawyers:

Mohamed El Hawawy; Khurram Ali; Natalie Jensen; Khalid Hamed


‘Natalie Jensen is very approachable, genuine, quick and thorough with her responses. She considers issues from different angles and is able to provide the necessary detail to enable her clients to take matters forward in the best way possible.’

‘The communication and follow-up on updates per case is perfect.’

Key clients

Al Noor Capital P.S.C

Yemen Company for Industrial Investment

Finasi LLC

Dutch Foundations LLC

Hiresh Rajpurohit

Hellmann Worldwide Logistics

Mossalam Dalati

Al Omran Real Estate Development Company LLC

Work highlights

  • Representing a leading investment company, Al Noor Capital P.S.C., in an anti-suit injunction before the ADGM Court against NMC Healthcare.
  • Advising an Australian multinational contractor, with respect to UAE law contentious issues on the sale of a company and other connected companies in the UAE, whose shares were beneficially owned by CIMIC subsidiaries.
  • Representing a leading industrial investment company, Yemen Company for Industrial Investment, in a High Court action for disclosure relief.

K&L Gates

K&L Gates has a broad disputes offering, covering international arbitration, DIFC litigation, local UAE litigation, and internal investigations. The team is co-headed by Jonathan Sutcliffe, who has significant experience handling energy, construction, hospitality, insurance, and joint venture disputes, and Nazanin Aleyaseen, who focuses on commercial disputes.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Sutcliffe; Nazanin Aleyaseen

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Paterson; Mohammad Rwashdeh


‘Lawyers with first-class intellect and dedication to their clients.’

‘Jennifer Paterson is one of the brightest minds of her generation, with the judgment of a senior partner.’

‘High quality work product, and seamless collaboration with international offices on larger matters.’

‘Jonathan Sutcliffe is an excellent lawyer: accurate, measured, calm, responsive, and easy to work with.’

‘The firm has international presence with lawyers of various qualifications and experience.’

‘Jonathan Sutcliffe is technically very strong. His years of advisory experience is useful, blending his legal advice with commercial elements and strategies.’

KBH Limited

KBH Limited has particular expertise in banking and financial services litigation, as well as capabilities in international arbitration cases. Managing partner DK Singh, who has substantial experience handling banking, insolvency, and shareholder disputes, leads the team alongside Bushra Ahmed, who specialises in commercial litigation and international arbitration, including cross-border disputes.

Practice head(s):

DK Singh; Bushra Ahmed

Other key lawyers:

Natasja Pollemans


‘Bushra Ahmed is an excellent dispute resolution lawyer. She is able to pick up the issue in the dispute very quickly and present her views in an efficient manner.’

‘DK Singh is a very experienced and thoughtful lawyer. He is excellent in pressured litigation where he brings a calm wisdom that puts him far ahead of his peers.’

‘Their collective work ethic is absolutely first-class and they will put in whatever effort it takes to get the finished product to the best possible level.

Key clients

Tabarak Investment Capital Limited

Robert Jones

Sanjeev Sawhney

Alka Sawhney

Axel Manes

Parag Gupta

Rajender Makhijani

Devika Makhijani

IGCF General Partner Limited

Envie Events LLC

Muhammad Tahir Lakhani

RAG Foodstuffs Trading LLC

ISGEC Heavy Engineering Limited

Work highlights

  • Represented Tabarak Investment Capital Limited in the first crypto currency dispute to be litigated before the DIFC Courts.

Mayer Brown

Mayer Brown focuses on commercial, construction and investment treaty disputes across the Middle East region. The group is led by Alain Farhad, who has substantial experience handling international arbitration matters. Patricia Ugalde Revilla, who was recently promoted to counsel, and senior associate Gerard Moore are noted for their experience in construction, engineering and energy arbitrations.

Practice head(s):

Alain Farhad

Other key lawyers:

Gerard Moore; Patricia Ugalde Revilla


‘Alain Farhad is a true arbitration specialist, and very well known and trusted in the market.’

Vinson & Elkins LLP

Vinson & Elkins LLP’s international dispute resolution and arbitration team has wide ranging experience across numerous arbitral forums and national courts. Practice head James Loftis specialises in international commercial and investor-state disputes. Nabeel Ikram recently joined from Hogan Lovells (United Arab Emirates) LLP, and focuses on contentious engineering and construction matters. Amir Ghaffari and Joseph Chedrawe left the firm.

Practice head(s):

James Loftis

Other key lawyers:

Nabeel Ikram

Work highlights

  • Representing the Ministry of Oil of the Republic of Iraq (as representative of the Republic of Iraq) in two arbitrations.
  • Representing Basrah Oil Company, the largest state affiliate oil company of the Ministry of Oil of the Republic of Iraq, in two disputes.

Watson Farley & Williams

Charlotte Bijlani heads the disputes practice at Watson Farley & Williams and has broad expertise acting for clients in a range of sectors, including technology, energy, transport, and real estate. Counsel Soraya Corm-Bakhos is noted for her international commercial arbitration expertise. Thomas Whitfield is heavily involved with disputes in the maritime sector and Haya Al Bawab focuses on cybercrime and technology-related disputes.

Practice head(s):

Charlotte Bijlani

Other key lawyers:

Soraya Corm-Bakhos; Thomas Whitfield; Haya Al Bawab


‘Charlotte Bijlani is the benchmark by which other dispute resolution practices are to be judged.’

‘Soraya Corm-Bakhos and Charlotte Bijlani are efficient, on the ball and they deliver. They have substantial arbitration experience and are themselves highly effective advocates with the ear of the tribunal.’

‘Charlotte Bijlani always has the big picture in mind and always sees the wood from the trees. She is practical, tactical, methodical, and always puts her clients first.’

‘Haya Al-Bawab has great initiative, is hands-on and get things done.’

‘Soraya Corm-Bakhos is excellent under pressure, and is a great critical thinker.’

‘The dispute resolution team at Watson Farley is very professional, diligent and attentive’

‘The lawyers at Watson Farley are knowledgeable and innovative, always coming up with new ideas and concepts.’

‘Regional reach, great team, pleasant and easy to deal with. Soraya Backhos is instrumental to the team’s success.’

Work highlights

  • Advising an aircraft lessor on the successful repossession of an Airbus 319-100.
  • Advising a Middle East shipowner in relation to a key dispute against one of South Korea’s leading heavy industries companies arising out of the performance of a transportation contract.
  • Advising a Middle Eastern petrochemicals company in a key shareholders’ dispute against a multinational company.