Franz Schwarz > WilmerHale > London, England > Lawyer Profile

49 Park Lane
Franz Schwarz photo

Work Department

International Arbitration; United Kingdom; Trials; Litigation


Vice Chair of WilmerHale’s International Arbitration Practice Group


Franz Schwarz focuses on complex multi-jurisdictional disputes. He has extensive experience with arbitral practice, procedure and advocacy both in civil and common law systems.

Mr. Schwarz has been involved in more than 250 arbitrations as counsel and arbitrator, both ad-hoc and before all major arbitral institutions (including ICC, LCIA, Vienna and Stockholm), at multiple seats and governed by a broad variety of substantive and procedural laws. He has a particular focus on joint venture, M&A, financial services, project finance, as well as commercial and corporate disputes.

Mr. Schwarz regularly counsels clients on conflict of laws issues and international enforcement of arbitration awards and judgments, including against state entities, and frequently advises parties on the protection of foreign investments under bilateral investment treaties and similar instruments.

Mr. Schwarz frequently serves as arbitrator, including as chairman of arbitral tribunals, and is included on the roster of several major arbitral institutions.

Publications and Speaking Engagements

Mr. Schwarz is a regular speaker on international arbitration topics, and teaches international arbitration at the University of Zurich, the Europainstitut in Saarbrücken and the Vienna University School of Economics.

Mr. Schwarz has also published extensively on topical issues of arbitration law. He is the co-author of The Vienna Rules—A Commentary on International Arbitration in Austria.

Professional Activities

Mr. Schwarz currently serves as Vice President of the Vienna International Arbitration Centre and a member of the Executive Board of the Swiss Arbitration Association. In 2020, he was designated by the Republic of Austria to serve as a member of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes Panel of Conciliators. He is also a member of the IBA Arbitration Sub-Committee on the New York Convention; the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, LCIA, DIS and the Swiss and Austrian Arbitration Associations. From 2003 to 2007, Mr. Schwarz served on the Executive Board of the American Arbitration Association’s ICDR Young & International Arbitration program, which he co-founded.


German, English


Rechtsanwalt, Austria

England and Wales, Registered European Lawyer


MCIArb, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, 2001

LLM, London School of Economics and Political Science, 1999

Mag iur, University of Vienna School of Law, 1995

Lawyer Rankings

London > Dispute resolution > International arbitration

(Leading individuals)

Franz SchwarzWilmerHale

The ‘truly specialist international arbitration practice group‘ within WilmerHale‘s London office has a leading market reputation for both commercial and investor-state arbitration work. With a track record of serving as counsel in over 675 arbitrations, practice chair Gary Born is ‘well known as the preeminent expert in international arbitration‘; Charlie Caher has particular experience in energy, construction, telecoms, insurance, joint venture and M&A-related disputes; Steven Finizio is an ‘incredibly knowledgeable and talented partner‘, who specialises in investment treaty and public international law issues; and Franz Schwarz has enviable experience in winning high-profile arbitration cases. The second line of key practitioners features ‘extraordinarily gifted lawyer and forceful advocate‘, Jonathan Lim, a triple-qualified English solicitor, Singapore advocate and New York lawyer, who was elevated from counsel to partner in January 2023.