STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law > Bucharest, Romania > Firm Profile

STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law

Romania > Dispute resolution Tier 1

Dispute resolution is a key focus for STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law, with practitioners described by one client as ‘real professionals in the science of the law‘. The multifaceted practice has an excellent reputation for high-value civil and administrative disputes and high-profile international arbitrations and investment treaty claims. Clients can also rely on the firm’s infrastructure to handle heavy portfolios of volume litigation. Partners such as Dragoș Bogdan and Cătălina Dicu, and associate Mihai Stănescu, have ‘a deep knowledge of the relevant law, doctrine and jurisprudence‘. Founding partner Valeriu Stoica is ‘one of the most talented, skilled, efficient lawyers in Romania’. Clients also praise Andreea Micu‘s ability ‘to propose the best solutions‘. Cristiana Stoica rounds out the roster of recommended names.

Practice head(s):

Valeriu Stoica; Cristiana Stoica


‘Stoica si Asociatii is one of the oldest, most powerful and sophisticated Romanian law firms.’

‘Valeriu Stoica – the founding partner – is “the professor”, one of the most talented, skilled, efficient lawyers in Romania. Dragoș Bogdan – a former judge – a practitioner with deep knowledge of the procedural matters and with exquisite logics.’

‘Not just a team of lawyers, but real professionals in the science of the law, having all the capabilities in finding the best solutions for your concerns.’

‘Each of the lawyers in this team can be described as having a deep knowledge of the relevant law, doctrine and jurisprudence, including at the European level. There were many cases in which Dragoș Bogdan, Cătălina Dicu and Mihai Stănescu assisted us in complex civil law, competition law and criminal law litigation, before national and European courts.’

‘The team has the capacity to give solutions for a wide range of legal challenges. Besides its internal skills and capabilities, the team has the supervision of a prestigious person with high level academical understanding. We received very proper legal solutions for disputes with local authorities on urban issues. The proposed solutions are very strong analyses, based both on Romanian and European laws.’

‘Andreea Micu has the ability and the power to propose the best solutions for legal disputes with local authorities. She is a great professional, with a great opening and time availability, keeping us up to date with the evolution of the facts.’

‘Pro-active attitude, good communication, extensive knowledge of legal topics.’

‘Always open and willing to make themselves available.’

Key clients


Lightman Management

Theda Mar

Mr. Radu Bugică

Societatea de Administrare a Participatiilor in Energie

Kaufland Romania

Reliantco Investments

Banca Comercială Română

UTI Group

Ariston Thermo Romania

Work highlights

  • Representing the Romanian State in an arbitral investment dispute initiated by the Sukyas Brothers in relation to claims arising out of the government’s alleged failure to restitute assets in Cinegrafia Română, a film company held by the claimants’ family members before its seizure by the communist regime in 1948.
  • Successfully represented Teva Pharmaceuticals in a tax amnesty claim.
  • Successfully represented Roche Romania in a damages claim brought by one of its distributors.

Romania > Intellectual property Tier 3

STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law is well regarded particularly for contentious matters, although the firm also assists clients with a wide range of advisory patent, copyright, trade mark and industrial design issues, as well as acting in cancellation and infringement claims. Clients benefit from the expertise of the ‘reputableValeriu Stoica, who combines with Dragoș Bogdan and senior associate Mihai Stănescu to offer a ‘strategic approach to the legal issues, which are carefully analysed to best serve the client’s interests‘.

Practice head(s):

Dragoș Bogdan

Other key lawyers:


‘Reliability, trust and initiative. Working with Stoica & Associatii gives you the guarantee that the matter will be handled in the best manner.’

‘The strength and persuasion ot the court stage of the reputable Valeriu Stoica and his team ( I name here Dragoș Bogdan and Mihai Stănescu) combine happily with their strategic approach to the legal issues, which are carefully analysed to best serve the client’s interests.’

Key clients

Icom Oil

Carpathian Springs


Allegria Turism



Work highlights

  • Assisting Bayer with securing its patent rights by obtaining a preliminary injunction against an international generic medicine producer, preventing it from effectively entering the Romanian market.
  • Representing the Romanian mineral water producer, Carpathian Springs, in litigation regarding the alleged infringement of a community trade mark concerning the shape of a water bottle belonging to a competitor.
  • Representing Icom Oil, a Romanian petroleum, fuel and oil products trader, in litigation against the holder of the trade mark Icom oil.

Romania > Restructuring and insolvency Tier 3

STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law fields an experienced team of insolvency lawyers who ‘give excellent legal advice in a short time‘. The firm has the capacity to handle large-scale debt recovery programmes for major creditors, which puts it among the top choices for several of Romania’s largest banks, including Banca Comerciala Romana and BRD – Groupe Societe Generale. A stellar reputation for litigation also ensures a regular flow of instructions on high-value insolvency proceedings. Cătălina Dicu leads the team, which also includes ‘brilliantDragoș Bogdan and founding partner Valeriu Stoica.

Practice head(s):

Cătălina Dicu

Other key lawyers:

Valeriu Stoica; Dragoş Bogdan


‘We must say that we are very pleased with the services they provide. They treat every legal case with professionalism.’

‘The lawyers in the firm have high legal knowledge in different areas.’

‘Dragoş Bogdan is a brilliant lawyer.’

‘They give excellent legal advice in a short time, offering legal solutions to different problems that could arise. We have an excellent communication.’

Key clients

Banca Comerciala Romana

BRD- Groupe Societe Generale


Work highlights

  • Assisting Banca Comerciala Romana with the case management of a portfolio of more than 1,000 insolvency cases of micro-enterprises throughout Romania.
  • Representing BRD – Groupe Societe Generale in the insolvency of a former Romanian aeronautical company.

Romania > TMT Tier 3

STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law has an experienced TMT practice which is firmly embedded with major industry clients operating in the telecoms and technology sectors. While it is best known for its dispute resolution capabilities, where it acts on a broad range of high-value civil, administrative and regulatory claims, the practice is also noted for its ability to handle ‘very different legal issues'. Key partners include Andreea Micu, who has a strong track record in competition issues; disputes expert Dan Rareş Răducanu; and IP specialist Dragoș Bogdan.

Practice head(s):

Andreea Micu; Dan Rareș Răducanu; Dragoș Bogdan


‘The ability to deal with very different legal issues, from public acquisitions, to IP rights, to electronic signatures.’

‘They never give up.’

‘The team have a deep knowledge of all business implications of the mandates. They provide value for money as well as on-the-spot legal advice all the time. The lawyers are very accurate and trustworthy when carrying out the advisory work. They are able to handle complex and sophisticated mandates. Their commitment to diversity is also very strong.’

‘Dan Rareș Răducanu is an excellent lawyer with a deep understanding of all legal and business implications. From the beginning of our collaboration, he has stood out through his exceptional professional training. He is able to find the proper solutions to legal problems subject to analysis, through professional rigour, punctuality, and counselling for the most advantageous solutions.’

Key clients


Telekom Mobile Romania

Orange Romania

Work highlights

  • Representing the Romanian telecoms operator RCS & RDS in a significant dispute with the Romanian Data Protection Authority.
  • Representing Netcity Telecom, a major provider of electronic communication infrastructure, in various civil and administrative disputes.
  • Representing Telekom Mobile Romania in a complex dispute with the Romanian fiscal authorities.

Romania > EU and competition

STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law is particularly well known for its contentious work, but also offers strong advisory support on the full range of competition law and state aid issues. Dragoș Bogdan oversees the work.

Romania > Real estate and construction

Under the guidance of Cătălina Dicu, the offering at STOICA & Asociatii – Attorneys at Law is developing a growing reputation for its litigation expertise, where it handles a raft of construction, administrative and real estate-related claims.

The firm: STOICA & Asociatii was established in November 1995, by two distinguished Romanian lawyers, Valeriu STOICA and Cristiana I STOICA. The founding partners committed their extensive legal and academic experience and practice to building one of the most reputed business law firms. STOICA & Asociatii’s team has over 50 members of which 32 lawyers, having a strong professional background, achieved in prestigious law schools from Romania and abroad. Business-like, pragmatic and responsive, the lawyers from STOICA & Asociatii graduated from the most reputable Romanian law schools, have excellent command of English and French and are familiar with the high professional standards of the legal practice that the law firm has adopted and constantly applied.

Since its establishment and up until the present, the lawyers at STOICA & Asociatii have proved that they are a strong team, always abiding by the underlying principles of this law firm Fidelitas, Integritas, Fortitudo.

STOICA & Asociatii is a member of the Bucharest Bar. The firm’s international professional contacts and affiliations include International Union of Lawyers, International Bar Association and World Link for Law.

Areas of practice: Since 1995 until present, STOICA & Asociatii advised, assisted or represented a large number of clients, Romanian or multinational companies, large or small and medium size companies, local authorities, non-profit organisations and clients from the public sector. The management of the clients’ portfolio was performed by the two founding partners, Valeriu Stoica and Cristiana I. Stoica, with the support of the partners and associate lawyers.

STOICA & Asociatii offers advisory, assistance and representation services in litigations in the following practice areas: civil law, intellectual property, corporate law, restructuring and debt recovering, insolvency, banking, insurance, capital markets and financing, domestic and international arbitration, enforcement proceedings, administrative, tax law and constitutional contentious matters, competition law and state aid, public procurement, labour law and social security, consumer’s protection, environmental law, human rights, ECHR procedures, and criminal law.

Moreover, STOICA & Asociatii’s expertise in the economic sectors offers the possibility to efficiently address the needs of the clients within the working groups specialised in specific industries and services: energy and natural resources, media and telecommunications, pharmaceutical industry, food and beverage industry, automotive industry, urbanism, infrastructure, civil and industrial constructions.

Civil law Cristiana I. (+4021) 402.09.30
Civil law Valeriu (+4021) 402.09.30
Intellectual property Dragos (+4021) 402.09.30
Corporate law Daniel (+4021) 402.09.30
Restructuring and debt recovering Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Insolvency Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Insolvency Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Banking, insurance, capital markets and financing Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Banking, insurance, capital markets and financing Dragos (+4021) 402.09.30
Domestic and international arbitration Cristiana I. (+4021) 402.09.30
Domestic and international arbitration Laura Elena (+4021) 402.09.30
Domestic and international arbitration Daniel (+4021) 402.09.30
Enforcement proceedings Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Administrative, tax law and constitutional contentious matters Rares (+4021) 402.09.30
Competitive law and state aid Dragos (+4021) 402.09.30
Competitive law and state aid Bogdan (+4021) 402.09.30
Public procurement Rares (+4021) 402.09.30
Public procurement Andreea Irina (+4021) 402.09.30
Labour law and social security Andrei (+4021) 402.09.30
Consumer protection Rares (+4021) 402.09.30
Environmental law Catalina (+4021) 402.09.30
Human rights/ECHR procedures Dragos (+4021) 402.09.30
Criminal law Veronica (+4021) 402.09.30
Number of lawyers : 32
World Link for Law
International Wine Law Association (AIDV)
American Chamber of Commerce in Romania (AmCham)
Romanian-German Chamber of Commerce (AHK Rumanien)
British Romanian Chamber of Commerce (BRCC)
Bucharest Bar

Romania: Dispute Resolution


The dispute resolution practice in 2022 reflected the most pressing economic and social challenges Romania was confronted with: the Covid-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, the energy crisis and the surging rate of inflation. Since all these situations are not expected to be worked out very soon, we believe that the dispute resolution practice at the end of 2022 could give us a glimpse of what lies ahead of us in 2023 in the courts of justice.


Many of the Romanian small and medium enterprises are still in the process of recovering from the financial turmoil caused by the Covid-19 isolation period, when almost the entire economic activity was frozen. Businesses already confronted with serious financial distress were struggling in 2022 with new challenges: the energy crisis and the rising inflation.

Thus, at the end of 2022, many undertakings were on the verge of losing the fight with the cost of raw-materials, labour, and utilities. As STOICA & Asociatii is currently involved in insolvency proceedings for several creditors battling hundreds of insolvency files, the increase is visible from the court perspective as well.

As per the official data published by the National Trade Register Office, by the end of November 2022, 6022 undertakings filed for insolvency, meaning an increase of 10,64% in comparison with last year’s numbers. This could be explained by the fact that, even though the economic conditions were not favourable in 2021 either, enterprises were not affected at that time by the energy crisis and the severe effects of the war in Ukraine. Against this severe economic background, in 2023, the insolvency fillings may considerably increase.

However, this unfortunate forecast could be changed if the new insolvency prevention measures prove effective. These have been modified, in order to comply with the European standards and to become, more efficient. Thus, it is possible that the improved procedures will help companies get on the right track.

Regarding the business sector, it should be pointed out that, despite the present unfavourable economic context, more and more companies are set up in Romania. The official statistics show that, by the end of November in 2022, 143.828 legal entities or authorized natural persons registered with the Trade Registry, meaning  an increase of 2,99% in comparison with 2021. Regardless of the fact that official information pertaining to the number of registrations in December 2022 is not yet published, pundits already estimate that the total number will exceed 150,000, a record-value for Romania.

The areas of growth in terms of newly registered enterprises, are the extractive industry, with 623.23% more registrations than the previous year, and production and supply of electricity and natural gas, with a growth of 196.07%.


As the energy crisis does not cease to burden both the consumers and the energy suppliers, the applicable legal framework is constantly updating, to ensure a prompt response to the evolving problems on the energy market.

The measure with the highest impact is the price compensation scheme, which allows consumers to pay a capped price, with the state budged offsetting suppliers for (a part) of the actual purchase price. However, since its entry into force, this mechanism has been constantly amended, application criteria and categories of beneficiaries changing from one month to another.

The instability and, in some cases, the lack of clarity of the legal provisions made it difficult for the concerned parties to keep up with the ever-changing legislation. This was reflected in many litigation cases arising from different interpretations of the same regulation by the contractual parties or its applicability to a certain situation or period of time.

As STOICA & Asociații regularly advises businesses involved in all sectors of the energy market (producers, distributors, suppliers, large consumers) which must find proper responses to countless questions on the interpretation of the constantly changing legislation, we observed that the energy sector was characterised by a growing sense of uncertainty.

As regards the litigation practice in this area, it concerns, mainly, either the execution of the contracts concluded between the consumer and their energy supplier, or the relation between de suppliers, distributors and producers, on the one hand, and the regulatory authority, on the other hand.

Regarding the former, it is visible that the instability of the legal framework, as well as the rising energy prices seriously reduced the possibility of the parties to fully comply with their contractual or legal obligations.

In 2022, numerous disputes arose from consumer’s financial incapacity. Faced with the surging inflation rate, as well as with the unexpectedly high energy prices, many individuals/ enterprises, failed to meet their payment obligations.

Even though the compensation scheme has proved to be a real aid to the consumer, it becomes one of the main causes for the suppliers’ financial distress. From this perspective, the shortage derives mainly from the difference between the regulated selling price and the market energy price they have to pay . As mentioned above, theoretically, the state budget should have reimbursed the suppliers for part of the difference between those two values.

However, the payments are delayed leading to cash flow shortages for energy suppliers.

The compensation scheme has recently been extended to all categories of beneficiaries who, depending on the circumstances and the actual consumption, will benefit from a certain price cap. Moreover, the scheme’s application has been extended until March 2025.

As for the relationship between those involved in the energy supply chain, on the one hand, and the authorities, on the other hand, starting with the past few years, the national regulatory authority started a campaign of investigations among the participants to the market. For example, since 2018, the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (Ro. ANRE) has initiated a number of 68 investigations in the wholesale market of electricity and natural gas.

In 2022, the number of complaints from the consumers filed with ANRE also increased. Many of these investigations have led to sanctions, the total amount of fines imposed by ANRE in 2022 was amounting to 29.753.685 lei (approx. 6 million Euro).

However, we observed that one of the main reasons leading to litigation cases is the unclear nature of the legal provisions pertaining to the secondary legislation, as well as, in some case, its often incongruity with the primary legislation. This “regulatory nightmare” can easily lead to misinterpretations and, as a matter of fact many of the sanctions applied by ANRE are challenged in court.

Even if we believe that 2023 will have the same trends, it cannot be ignored that the energy market, as well as the relations and conflicts established in relation to it, are more unpredictable than other areas of practice. Thus, the way in which energy practice will evolve depends on the legislative solutions that will be adopted, both internally and at EU level.

For example, we are expecting new EU regulations on energy issues to enter into force, since many proposals are in the pipeline, such us the proposal for introducing REpowerEU chapters in national recovery and resilience plans. Therefore, such new measures may play a key role on the energy market and, subsequently, in the energy dispute resolution practice.


The general increase in prices also impacted the banking sector, currently fighting with the devaluation of the national currency and the increase of benchmarks. These are essential elements for the banking activity, as they set the interest rates in most cases.

In Romania, it is not uncommon for an individual to have more than one credit contract and it is known that the banks had granted in the past a great number of long-term credits that now are turning to be an outstanding debt for the consumers. Thus, in addition to the general increase of the cost of living, many Romanians are also challenged with considerably increased interest rates. Many of them are failing to meet their payment obligations, which leads to them being subject to enforcement proceedings.

Currently, the number of banking related court litigations initiated by consumers have gone down in comparison with few years ago – ie the number of pending litigations is three times lower in 2022 than it was in 2015-2016 -, as a direct consequence of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms which have been since implemented. Considering that STOICA & Asociații represents several banks in nationwide litigations cases, we can confirm the decrease especially in consumer protection related litigations with regard to inter alia the currency denomination of the loan agreements.

We believe that 2023 could bring a slight increase in this area of practice, amid the worsening of the conditions of the financial market. Thus, since the start of 2021, ROBOR 3M index, frequently used as reference for interest rates, increased from 2,01% to 7,57 %, at the end of December 2022.

Considering that neither the current economic situation, nor the ROBOR and EURIBOR forecasts are optimistic, it is possible that 2023 will show an increase in the number of recovery disputes .

As the current tendency shows, the individuals’ response to this kind of distress is to bring before the court any action that might help them reduce the debt burden. As a consequence, we can expect Romanian courts to be faced with more challenges to enforcement proceedings, as well as claims for declaring unfair terms in credit contracts and litigation regarding the application of the Giving in Payment Law.

The growth of the banking practice may also be fuelled by the increase in the number of credit agreements concluded. The graphic below shows that the number of loans that banks have granted has increased steadily since the beginning of 2021, until the end of 2022.[1]

Even though the instability of the local currency and the increase of the interest rates might deter some persons from entering a credit agreement, the same circumstances may be the reason for others to seek obtaining a loan, in order to refinance their debt. These refinancing agreements might add up to the already extensive dispute resolution practice in this field.


In 2022, the real estate practice was faced with numerous disputes regarding district zoning plans, which culminated with an administrative blockage for the developers who were interested in initiating real estate projects.

Bucharest should have had a new General Urban Plan ever since 2016. As it failed to do so, the city’s districts have unilaterally initiated their own Coordinating Urban Plans, but these have either been already annulled or are in the process of being scrapped by the administrative courts. Previously, district zoning plans (PUZ) have been suspended by the Municipality. Since the district zoning plans are suspended, it is impossible to initiate new real estate projects, which directly concern the developers that intended to invest in real estate in Bucharest.

The real estate litigation practice in 2022 also involved cases where the local authorities classified or maintained private real estate as green spaces.

Our practice in this field shown us that authorities often confuse the concept of limiting the exercise of the prerogatives of the right of ownership with the suppression of the possibility of exercising the right of ownership. If the owner cannot exercise any of the attributes of his property rights, this is considered as de facto expropriation, according to ECHR case law.

This practice has brought numerous case files before the court and the judges repeatedly dismissed this abusive conduct.

Without a clear change in the attitude of the authorities or a legislative amendment that clarifies the delimitation between public and private interests in this specific matter, we can expect such disputes to dominate the real estate practice in the coming year as well.


The public procurement practice was influenced to a certain extent by the legislative changes that have occurred.

The increase in the price of construction materials, combined with the hike in electricity and natural gas prices, had as consequence the enactment of new pieces of legislation pertaining to price adjustment of inter alia public procurement contracts. Thus, these new laws cover any fluctuation of costs on which the price of works contracts was based, in addition to the cost of construction materials.

In addition, the local public procurement legislation has undergone many changes as well. For example, according to the Government Emergency Ordinance no. 26/2022, the contracting authority has the right to apply the negotiation procedure without the prior publication of a notice of participation for the award of public procurement contracts when, for reasons of extreme urgency, the deadlines for inter alia open tender procedures cannot be respected.

Law no. 98/2016 on public procurement was also amended, as to show a greater concern for the environment over protecting economic interests. Thus, as provided therein, the contracting authority will not use the lowest cost/ price as an award criterion in the case of certain categories of public procurement contracts that have an impact on the environment.

In the matter of disputes, prior to bringing an action before the court, the National Council for Solving Oppositions (Ro. NCSO) is the competent authority for solving any disagreements with regard to the awarding of public procurement contracts.

The party concerned has the right to challenge the decisions given by NCSO. However, if we sum up the decisions issued by the NCSO from its establishment until the end of 2021, we will notice that out of the 65,231 decisions only 2.43% have been amended/overturned/annulled by the competent courts of appeal.

It results that from September 2006 to December 2021, the total number of decisions that remained final after their appeal was 63,645, meaning that a percentage of 97.57% of the total decisions remained as initially issued by NCSO.


As regards the dispute resolution practice concerning family relationships, we have seen a spike in post-pandemic separations between spouses. Since, in many cases, separations occurs due to misunderstandings and conflicts, those situations can only be resolved before a court. From this perspective, the year 2022 brought an increase in the litigation proceedings concerning family law.

Important legal amendments have been adopted in the field of protection of persons who, for various reasons, do not have the capacity to represent the consequences of their own actions.

Until recently, a rather drastic procedure was in force in order to limit the legal capacity of these persons and to appoint a representative to manage all their patrimonial interests.

Following a decision of the Constitutional Court of Romania, the whole system was reformed in 2022. The above-mentioned procedure was replaced with measures with a differentiated effect on the person’s ability to manage their affairs, so as to be as appropriate as possible to the particular situation of the person concerned.

As provided therein, the cases of all persons who were, at that time, under the effect of the restrictions provided by the previous regulation, will have to be reviewed by the court, upon request or ex officio, within the first three years from the date of entry into force of the new law. Thus, we should expect that in 2023 the number of court cases pertaining to this issue will increase considerably.


The Covid pandemic was a real challenge especially for the court system, as the isolation period precluded both the parties and the judges to participate to hearing proceedings as usual, face to face.

In order to ensure the optimal functioning of the courts’ activity, legal provisions were adopted to allow court hearings to be held online, by means of audio-visual telecommunication. This measure was intended to be applied only for reasons related to the covid pandemic. However, it was considered appropriate and convenient to extend the possibility to use this option.

In this regard, a new law was adopted in 2022, establishing that, in civil matters, hearings can be held online, provided the parties agree, without any further consideration regarding the reasons that may prevent the parties or the judges from physically appearing in court. According to the new regulation, it will be applicable only for a period of one year from the date of its entering into force, namely until July 2023.

In practice, court hearings are generally held as usual, with the parties appearing physically in front of the court. However, the opportunity created by this new law really comes in handy when the parties have their residence in another city or even in another country. It is thus possible that, to preserve the benefit of these measures, the law could be amended to further extend its’ application.

One of the biggest improvements that the Covid-19 measures brought to the court system pertains to electronic service of documents. Currently, not only parties can submit documents by electronic means, but more and more courts send subpoenas or decisions in this way.

Electronic service is starting to become the standard and generally accepted practice not only in court, but in relation with all state authorities. For example, post-Covid regulations provide for electronic communication in relation with fiscal authorities, as well as the Trade Register.


For the areas of practice where this option is viable, namely commercial disputes or other disputes concerning rights at the parties’ disposal, choosing arbitration over the proceedings in front of national courts may be very appealing.

Even though there are some disadvantages that cannot be as easily observed, arbitration has several undeniable advantages.

First of all, international arbitration empowers the parties with a greater control over the whole process. Thus, starting with initiating the arbitration proceedings and continuing with choosing the procedural rules and the arbitrators, all these aspects are decided by the involved parties.

Maybe one of the most important matters, that draw more and more parties towards arbitration, is the possibility of choosing the arbitrators. Thus, arbitrators can be chosen based on their professional qualifications and performance, based on their opinions on certain legal problems or any other criteria that the parties may consider relevant.

This eliminates or, at least, considerably reduce the potential mistrust in the professionalism or impartiality of the arbitrarily appointed national judge.

Another benefit is the privacy of the proceedings. As opposed to national court proceedings, arbitration proceedings are not public and, also, the award given is not published.

In addition, arbitration proceedings are deemed more efficient and much less time-consuming. However, this is not always the case, as there can be incidents arising during arbitration proceedings which require a longer time for solving.

For example, arbitration proceedings, especially those held in front of an international arbitration court, present a risk that does not usually appear in the national court proceedings. It is highly possible that the foreign appointed arbitrators are not familiar with the provisions of the national law applicable in the dispute. In such case, they would usually,   request an expert opinion for the matter at hand. This situation will obviously prolong the dispute and, also, will increase the proceedings costs, due to the fact that the concerned party will have to pay the expert a commonly agreed fee.

Regarding the financial matters, arbitration also involves other expenses. Thus, as opposed to normal court proceedings, arbitration fees, as well as the arbitrators’ remuneration are to be paid by the parties. All of these make arbitration to be an option which could prove to be more expensive than bringing an action in front of the national courts.

Another downside of the arbitration proceedings is that there is not a double degree of jurisdiction, as no appeal can be filed against the award given. An award can only be challenged in front of a judicial court with an action for annulment, for certain grounds regarding, mainly, the legality of the decision and of the process itself.

Both international arbitration and proceedings before national courts have advantages and disadvantages, so it is up to the parties to decide which characteristics are more important to them – duration, impartiality, efficiency, private nature, and costs.

[1] The graphic was drawn up based on the data published by the National Bank of Romania.