White & Case at the Top in Latin American Arbitration
Global law firm White & Case LLP has been recognized at the top of the field of Latin American arbitration by Chambers Latin America 2012. Chambers describes White & Case as "a powerhouse at the forefront of Latin American international arbitration" and "impressively efficient." White & Case is the only firm to rank tier one in both international arbitration and project finance, fields which are critical to investment and dispute resolution in the region.
According to Chambers, "White & Case has one of the most extensive and esteemed international arbitration practices in the business, and a long history of handling cases throughout Latin America. The firm's international arbitration group has approximately 70 attorneys with Latin American involvement, around 30 of whom are fluent in either Spanish or Portuguese. The firm has run offices in Mexico and Brazil since the 1990s, highlighting its pedigree and dedication to the region."
"White & Case's leadership in Latin American arbitration is driven by the interests of our clients, the dedication of our team and our longstanding vision to be a global and local leader the region," stated Latin American arbitration practice partner Jonathan C. Hamilton, based in Washington, DC.
White & Case has achieved a series of major successes in Latin American dispute resolution in the past year alone. Recent examples include:
1) Argentina Sovereign Finance Dispute – Successfully establishing jurisdiction in Abaclat v. Argentina, a $1 billion-plus ICSID case involving "the first prominent use of an investment protection treaty to challenge a sovereign government’s handling of a default and restructuring" with a result "whose effects may reverberate widely". (IAReporter)
2) Ecuador Airport Dispute – Successfully resolving a $1 billion-plus dispute, Quiport v. Ecuador, in "one of the most complex project disputes in Latin America's recent history" involving "myriad proceedings under contracts and treaties." (Latin Lawyer, American Lawyer)
3) Peru Cultural Patrimony Dispute – Successfully advising on the return of priceless artifacts removed almost a century ago from Machu Picchu in Peru v. Yale, with a result that sends "a message to collectors around the world." (The Economist)
"Our presence in Latin America is integrated across multiple offices, as we combine our international arbitration expertise with our local specialization. This is a strategy that we have used in regions worldwide, with benefit to our clients who seek that combination," stated Paul Friedland, head of the Firm's Global International Arbitration Practice.
Formidable in Latin American Arbitration. Building on its longstanding history in the region, the firm is recognized as a leader in Latin America:
1) Pioneer – White & Case's Global International Arbitration Practice was founded more than two decades ago and has been a pioneer in Latin American arbitration, including advising on the first ICSID arbitration ever registered against a Latin American state.
2) Large Team – White & Case has a team of 70 lawyers involved in Latin American arbitration, including some 30 lawyers fluent in Spanish or Portuguese representing nationalities from across the region.
3) Global and Local Presence – The White & Case Latin American arbitration practice is both global and local, centered in Washington, DC, and New York, working closely with the Miami, Mexico City, Monterrey and Sao Paulo offices, as well as other offices worldwide. White & Case is the only premiere global arbitration practice with a longstanding presence in the two largest markets in Latin America: Mexico (20 years) and Brazil (14 years). The firm has advised clients in matters relating to every major market in the region.
4) Industry Sectors – White & Case has recognized expertise in the industry sectors which are central to Latin American arbitration, such as energy (electricity, oil and gas, renewables), mining and metals, construction, financial services, transportation, telecommunications, investment and sovereign matters.
5) Leadership in Latin America – White & Case lawyers are leaders in organizations and analysis related to Latin American arbitration and have published in the past year Latin Arbitration Law (www.latinarbitrationlaw.com), Drafting Arbitration Clauses (in Spanish) and the ITA Survey of Latin American Arbitral Institutions.
White & Case is currently engaged on diverse matters throughout the region, such as a Guatemala electricity case under CAFTA-DR, a Peru electricity case, a Peru ports case, the first case under the Peru-US Trade Promotion Agreement and other matters related to Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Panama, Paraguay, Venezuela and other jurisdictions.
Chambers also recognized multiple White & Case lawyers as leading practitioners active in Latin America. According to Chambers, "Jonathan Hamilton is highly dedicated to the region and benefits from the experience of a spell spent at the firm's Mexico City office and a stint as a foreign associate in Peru. He is fluent in Spanish and clients acknowledge his 'great dynamism, extraordinary background and deep understanding.'" Paul Friedland won acclaim for "first-rate work." Carolyn Lamm and Abby Cohen Smutny are cited as "illustrious global practitioners" and "lawyers of the highest quality." Associate Rafael Llano Oddone is noted for "an impressive grasp of investment arbitration politics and strategy." Chambers USA also cites Spanish-speaker Ank Santens, and NAFTA expert Andrea Menaker is another key part of the Latin American arbitration practice, as are other partners. The recognition caps the Firm's top tier ranking in international arbitration globally and in the United States.
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