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Cross-Border Litigation

Globalization of major business sectors goes hand in hand with the need to litigate or resolve disputes that are pending simultaneously in multiple countries and jurisdictions. The complications of cross-border litigation have only expanded with increased worldwide government intervention in the economy, spurred by the Great Recession. No matter where our clients are doing business, they hear the message: “Uncle Sam has you!” Whether in financial services, energy, life sciences, technology and communications, or supply and procurement, US government regulation and policy influence the origin and resolution of disputes worldwide.

Global businesses today need sophisticated cross-border legal services and litigation counsel that recognize the special challenges of government intervention in the global economy. Success in cross-border litigation requires a law firm have more than just a global footprint. Businesses need cross-border counsel, particularly litigation counsel, who integrate litigation and dispute-resolution skills with comprehensive regulatory, government-policy and industry insight, and access to those governing powers across the globe.

Why Choose Us

  • We routinely litigate and advocate on behalf of clients in courts and arbitration forums in their most complex and financially and reputational material cross-border and multijurisdictional disputes.
  • Leveraging the expertise and access of our regulatory and public policy colleagues, who include former US Ambassadors and Senators, we also help clients manage exposure to risk and champion their interests before Congress, the European Commission and other regulatory bodies in the Middle East and Asia Pacific.
  • We also work closely with our global transactional and industry practices and know the business deals that often underlie these disputes. We also work closely with clients’ crisis management teams to address issues of reputation.
  • Sovereign governments throughout Europe, Asia Pacific, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America rely on us to handle their most complex commercial cross-border disputes, and to defend their interests in litigation and arbitrations throughout the world.

Global Industries Exposed to Cross-border Litigation

Banking and Financial Services

We are a formidable litigation force and internationally renowned for representing global banks, state-owned banks, sovereign wealth funds and other financial institutions in their most complex, financially and reputational material cross-border litigation and arbitrations, many of which implicate US financial-sector regulations and government investigations. We represent clients in a range of claims, relating to the extraterritorial application of US law, sophisticated cross-border contracts, securities, derivatives, direct and indirect investments, asset seizures, and consumer protection and unfair business practices laws.

Our team consists of highly respected litigators, trial lawyers, including former DOJ trial lawyers, and international dispute resolutions lawyers, who have been involved in some of the world’s most well-documented multijurisdictional litigation involving US financial regulation, including the liquidation of BCCI, which operated in more than 75 countries. Buoyed by a team of former financial services regulators and policymakers, including the former chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), we are able counsel clients on cross-border litigation risk exposure and handle virtually all claims anywhere in the world.

Construction and Engineering

Globally, our construction specialists represent private developers, EPC contractors and general contractors, specialty subcontractors, architects and design professionals, and investors in their most significant construction projects around the world, including the US, Middle East, Europe, Africa, and throughout Asia Pacific. We address all phases of clients’ cross-border construction projects and for different types of projects – from oil, gas, chemical, refinery, mining, power, nuclear and alternative energy plants and platforms to public facilities, such as schools, museums and hospitals and state-of-the-art retail, hospitality, sports and entertainment complexes, to the very infrastructure that supports the development of such projects, including roads, railway, ports, pipelines, waste treatment plants and utility projects.

Our global team is composed of highly experienced litigators and dispute resolution lawyers who have extensive backgrounds in construction engineering, project management and contract negotiations. Our team has cultivated strong industry relationships, globally, as well as in their local markets, and have handled all manner of construction claims through adjudication and mediation and before international arbitration tribunals, as well as before local courts.


In the US, and globally, we are ranked and recognized as one of the leading law firms in infrastructure project financing and development, assisting governments, sovereigns and other project sponsors, developers, contractors and lenders, including the World Bank, to build critical transportation thoroughfares, such as roads, railways, airports and ports; basic infrastructure services, such as water, utility and waste treatment; energy resources infrastructure, including mining and drilling; and public and civic infrastructure, including housing, hospitals, education, government, hospitality and entertainment facilities. Likewise, we represent clients in cross-border disputes and litigation involving territorial issues; bilateral agreements and cross-border investments, involving mergers and acquisitions, public-private partnerships and various types of financing instruments, securities and related obligations; issues related to privatization, trade and insolvency; among other claims.

We have been intimately involved in the infrastructure development and litigation of the world’s most dynamic emerging countries in regions, such as Africa, Middle East, Europe, the Caribbean and Latin America, and Asia Pacific. We are able to quickly address exposure to cross-border disputes before local and/or internal judicial forums most favorable to the parties and the projects being built. Our team is further complemented by the former US Secretary of Transportation and former US senators and ambassadors who are ready to help clients navigate Congress on related policy issues or if disputes involve US governmental inquiries.

Institutional Investors

We represent institutional investors across all asset classes, transaction types and geographies in their litigation and dispute resolution needs as both plaintiff and defense counsel. Our clients include sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, private equity and hedge funds, insurance companies, foundations, family offices and high-net-worth individuals. We aggressively pursue our clients’ goals in a broad range of cross-border litigation relating to their international investments in real estate, infrastructure projects, debt instruments, securities, derivatives and commodities, as well as the management and recovery of assets. Often, these lawsuits are high-exposure and high-profile, and stem from or lead to US litigation and investigations. Reflecting the breadth of our clients’ investments, our Litigation team has broad experience in cross-border investments and includes former senior trial lawyers and division chiefs of the DOJ, who have successfully represented members of Congress, sitting judges, directors and officers of FTSE 100 and Fortune 500 companies and senior members of the White House.

Energy and Natural Resources

We have long been recognized for our participation in many of the world’s major energy projects and disputes. Our experience covers all stages of the energy supply chain and includes significant roles in projects and disputes involving oil and gas, renewables and mining. We have received international recognition for our litigation and arbitration successes, particularly in the area of natural gas and LNG pricing issues. Our clients include sovereign governments, major and independent E&P companies, international mining firms, oil, gas and mineral transportation and marketing companies, power generators, utilities, financial institutions, landowners, investors and buyers of minerals and energy products, petrochemical companies and companies specializing in the manufacture and distribution of related equipment, as well as contractors involved in designing and constructing energy infrastructure facilities.

We regularly handle domestic and cross-border litigation and arbitration of a variety of disputes concerning construction of plants, facilities, pipelines and terminals; oil and gas and mining leases; concession and production sharing agreements; operational issues; transportation, storage and marketing; seismic and geophysical data and services; oilfield and mining equipment and services; long-term commodity supply contracts; and energy industry insurance claims. We also work with other specialists on matters concerning environmental compliance, patent and trade secret issues, labor disputes, Alien Tort Statute and False Claims Act/qui tam claims, and matters before regulatory agencies, including the US Department of Energy (DOE) and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). We have been deeply involved in litigation and dispute resolution in key, energy rich regions in the US, Middle East, Africa, Europe and Asia Pacific.


For more than 50 years, we have served as trusted advisors, litigators and strategists to more than 100 sovereign governments, state-owned entities and sovereign wealth funds in protecting against and confronting litigation in the US and around the world. Our sovereign clients are based in many of the world’s most dynamic and emerging markets in the Middle East, Africa, throughout Europe, Latin America and Asia. We represent our clients in cross-border litigation involving investments, including debt investments and bilateral investment treaties, construction and infrastructure projects, territorial disputes, trade and matters related to human rights, environmental issues and other issues of public international law.

Our Sovereign Litigation team is at the nexus of law, government and business, championing clients’ interests in courts and international tribunals around the world and before Congress on a wide array of jurisdictional and sovereign immunity issues, and the extraterritorial application of US law. Our team includes not only litigators and trial lawyers who are internationally recognized for their work in sovereign-related litigation, but also former US senators and US ambassadors, who have helped sovereigns navigate sensitive international relations directly tied to cross-border disputes and international relations.

Aerospace, Defense and Government Contracts

We represent leading aerospace, defense and government services companies around the world in all areas of litigation, including cross-border litigation and international arbitration. We bring the right mix of industry experience, US Department of Defense (DOD) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) access and insight, litigation strategy and global coverage to support clients in their most critical cross-border disputes and investigations. We represent clients in litigation related to manufacturing and supply chain relationships; DOD and other government agency contracts; International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR); customs and export control issues; market access and trade disputes; False Claims Act/qui tam actions; product performance and quality-related issues; patent, intellectual property disputes and licensing matters; and anticorruption issues, as well as litigation related to CFIUS investigations. Our team has extensive knowledge of science and engineering principles related to aerospace and defense technology, such as spacecraft, rocket and jet engines and components, missiles, as well as defense-related software and global supply chain management. We are recognized thought leaders in the aerospace, defense and government services industries, and we are the authors of ITAR Handbook. Our cross-border litigation capabilities are further enhanced by litigators and public policy team members who include former senior ranking members of the US Department of Homeland Security, DOD and FAA and former members of Congress who served on the Senate Committee on Armed Services.

Consumer Products

We work with our consumer products clients, including automotive, food and beverage, and retailers to globalize their brands and product lines. In concert, we help them navigate cross-border regulatory issues and litigate on their behalf to ensure their products, services, intellectual property and reputation remain safe and commercially viable across the globe. We represent clients in all manner of cross-border commercial disputes involving unfair business practices and anticompetitive issues, including counterfeit products and grey market sales; breach of contract, and other cross-border issues such as off-shoring and re-shoring; issues related to human rights violations in third-world product manufacturing, as well consumer class and multijurisdictional mass actions involving claims of false advertising; and fraud and breach of privacy, which, due to social media and worldwide interest in US plaintiff bar activity, are trending globally across first-world countries, as well as claims of personal injury and product liability that necessitate global product recalls, and parallel government investigations and litigation, including criminal charges. More often than not, cross-border and multijurisdictional litigation trends back to litigation in the US, particularly class action litigation involving antitrust, consumer and securities and shareholder claims. In the US, we have a market-leading Class Action & Multidistrict Litigation team, who is resident in each of our US offices and ready to address such claims.

Life Sciences

We represent life sciences companies, including biotechnology, cosmetics, pharmaceutical and medical device companies, around the world as defense and plaintiffs’ counsel to ensure the integrity, development and commercialization of their innovative products, including in commercially critical, but regulatory-challenged emerging markets in Europe and parts of the Middle East and Asia Pacific. We counsel clients in cross-border litigation related to intellectual property infringement, commercial agreements, including clinical trials, manufacturing and distribution and other joint venture or licensing agreements, as well as litigation stemming out of regulatory review, market approvals (and access) and anticompetitive and antitrust-related issues and investigations. Leveraging our close ties with governing regulatory bodies and local judiciary across the globe, we are able to deftly address cross-border disputes, including criminal charges, obtain necessary injunctions to ensure client product distribution is not interrupted, and to address any related government investigations. We also work with clients to swiftly address reputational material multijurisdictional cross-border litigation, particularly in the areas of antitrust, products liability and personal injury litigation, which requires substantial political and cultural acumen and organizational skill. If such litigation metastasizes into US litigation, we have a formidable, national coordinating counsel and trial team experience, acting for some of the world’s largest pharmaceuticals in this capacity.

Shipping, Transportation and Logistics

Global by nature, transportation, shipping and logistics law presents difficult, unique and culturally sensitive issues. We are a market-leader in this specialized area of law and seamlessly integrate the required legal disciplines and our deep and broad experience with diverse locations, languages and cultures. We represent transportation companies, ocean carriers, charterers, non-vessel operating common carriers (NVOCCs), ocean terminals, transit systems, port authorities, cargo owners and their insurers. We advise on casualties and contracts involving cargoes such as crude and refined oil, petrochemicals, liquid natural gas (LNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), containers, ore, grain and break bulk cargo. We also handle issues involving submarine cables and intermodal transportation and terminals. With deep expertise in marine casualties from vessel sinkings and groundings to major ocean pollution and piracy, we have long been recognized as the “go to” team for seasoned and rapid advice and action around the world. We are well-known for our quick actions and ability to achieve results under the most difficult conditions. In a similar vein, we have years of experience in charter party, contract of affreightment and bills of lading disputes, commodity trading and other maritime contracts. Our expertise extends to the US Supreme Court, federal appellate and district courts, and arbitrations before a wide range of arbitration forums including the Society of Maritime Arbitrators (SMA) in New York, the London Maritime Arbitrators Association (LMAA), together with arbitral bodies and commodity associations in many countries, as well as ad hoc arbitrations and mediations.

Communications and Technology

We are an internationally recognized leader in communications law, regulation and legislation, helping connect all regions of the globe via telecommunications, intranet and other emerging communication technologies. Because we regularly appear before the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and other communications agencies worldwide, we are at the forefront of advising countries, particularly developing countries, in the funding and development of such technologies and underlying infrastructure, including satellites, cross-border infrastructure and transmission and transoceanic submarine cables. We are also at the forefront of assisting in the intellectual property development of such innovations, including haptic and voice-recognition communications, digital display and imaging systems, and other telecommunications, publishing, gaming and internet technologies and related software and hardware. Because of this industry insight and extensive global access, we represent communications and technology companies, sovereigns, investors and other parties in their most complex cross-border disputes and litigation. We address all types of commercial disputes involving investment default, bankruptcy, breach of contract, technology and licensing, outsourcing, construction, maritime, territorial issues and bilateral agreements; intellectual property disputes, including patent, intellectual property rights and antitrust issues, including challenges before the International Trade Commission (ITC), US and European Patent and Trademark Offices and other specialized intellectual property courts and tribunals, world-wide; as well as cross-border consumer-related issues and regulation discrepancies involving rates, automated texting and calling, privacy, third-party fee “cramming” and other issues. Our Cross-Border Litigation team is further complemented by former high-ranking FCC lawyers and more than 20 registered patent lawyers who have worked extensively in a variety of technology disciplines and have advanced degrees in such disciplines.

Our capabilities of particularly high value in cross-border and multijurisdictional litigation and dispute resolution include:

  • Asset seizures
  • Challenging or establishing jurisdiction and venue
  • Choice of forum and governing law
  • Challenging claims by or against foreign nationals under country-specific laws, such as Alien Tort Statute and Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act
  • Compelling or staying arbitral proceedings
  • Enforcing or challenging arbitral awards
  • Government investigations and directed disclosures
  • Obtaining or opposing provisional remedies, including emergency restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, attachments and other temporary measures of protection
  • Obtaining evidence using the Hague Evidence Convention or diplomatic channels; 28 USC § 1782; and Norwich Pharmacal in the UK

We handle numerous types of cross-border and multijurisdictional disputes, including:

  • Antitrust and unfair competition
  • Anticorruption and anti-money laundering claims related to Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), False Claims Act/qui tam, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and UK Bribery Act
  • Commercial, contract and trade disputes, including licensing/manufacturing, supply and distribution agreements/joint ventures and other partnership agreements
  • Consumer class and action litigation
  • Environmental compliance and catastrophe
  • Export controls, sanctions and customs