Debevoise & Plimpton LLP

International Arbitration Department

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What the team is known for Maintains its position at the forefront of the commercial and investment treaty arbitration market, acting for a wide range of multinational corporations and sovereign states. Offers a deep bench of experienced arbitration counsel, well versed in handling disputes conducted under the auspices of all major institutional rules as well as in those heard in ad hoc settings. Provides particular expertise in arbitrations involving Latin American parties, as well as increasing activity in disputes seated in Asia.

Notable practitioners

Catherine Amirfar is highly experienced in investment treaty arbitrations and regularly acts for states and investors, drawing on her expertise as a former adviser to the US Department of State. "She is one of the finest advocates with whom I have ever worked," states one source, highlighting "her mastery of the substance of international legal issues and her judgement as to legal strategy."

Christopher Tahbaz regularly acts for clients in commercial arbitrations and is particularly recognised for his expertise in matters relating to Asia. Interviewees highlight his "clear, concise and focused" approach to matters.

David Rivkin has a wide-ranging practice covering investment treaty and commercial arbitrations, and is considered "one of the real stars in the business." He acts for both states and investors, as well as sitting as arbitrator. "He's outstanding," reports a market insider, explaining that "he's an incredible advocate and he puts evidence together well."

Dietmar Prager is well respected in the market for his arbitration practice, which sees him described as a "really very impressive" attorney. He works on high-value investment treaty and commercial disputes, with particular expertise in arbitrations with links to Latin America.

Donald Donovan is widely recognised as "a giant in the field" for his extensive expertise acting as both counsel and arbitrator in complex commercial and investment treaty arbitrations. "He is clearly a star and is extremely responsive," comments a client, adding: "He is an outstanding lawyer with deep knowledge and experience in international arbitration."

Ina Popova has a broad caseload spanning both commercial and investment treaty arbitrations. She represents clients from a number of sectors, including oil, energy and mining, and draws praise for her extensive language capabilities and "very well respected" practice.

Mark Friedman offers deep expertise in investment treaty arbitrations, acting for investors across an impressive range of sectors. One interviewee reports that he is "an incredibly good advocate who is incredibly good on his feet," while another notes: "He is very experienced, explains things thoroughly, and has good insight and strategy."

Natalie Reid is "an absolutely superb rising star," reports a market insider, while another describes her as "very thoughtful and impressive." She is increasingly recognised for her handling of BIT and commercial arbitrations, acting for multiple global corporations and states.