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James Barratt

(he/him/his)

  • Partner | Litigation

James Barratt advises and represents clients in some of the world’s most complex and challenging disputes.

James offers clients more than two decades of experience in international commercial arbitration, public international law, and investment arbitration. He has served as counsel in more than 100 international arbitrations, where the amounts in dispute have often exceed US$1 billion. He often leads the team and conducts the advocacy as the first chair. James also has been appointed to sit as an arbitrator.

Multinational corporations, institutional investors, governments, and international organizations have engaged James’s representation in arbitrations administered under the rules of all major institutions (including the ICC, LCIA, SIAC, and HKIAC) as well as in ad hoc UNCITRAL proceedings under various applicable laws (including English, French, German, Spanish, Swiss, Brazilian, PRC, Japanese, Russian, and public international law).

James has worked extensively with clients in As...

James Barratt advises and represents clients in some of the world’s most complex and challenging disputes.

James offers clients more than two decades of experience in international commercial arbitration, public international law, and investment arbitration. He has served as counsel in more than 100 international arbitrations, where the amounts in dispute have often exceed US$1 billion. He often leads the team and conducts the advocacy as the first chair. James also has been appointed to sit as an arbitrator.

Multinational corporations, institutional investors, governments, and international organizations have engaged James’s representation in arbitrations administered under the rules of all major institutions (including the ICC, LCIA, SIAC, and HKIAC) as well as in ad hoc UNCITRAL proceedings under various applicable laws (including English, French, German, Spanish, Swiss, Brazilian, PRC, Japanese, Russian, and public international law).

James has worked extensively with clients in Asia Pacific and Latin America and clients also frequently seek his advice on investment treaty disputes and public international law. His practice has a particular focus on disputes in the energy sector, especially natural gas and LNG disputes, and he also has conducted substantial arbitrations in various sectors, including life sciences, private equity, aviation, defense, technology, and telecommunications.

James is an English qualified barrister with full rights of audience before all English courts. He was called to the Bar in 2001 (Middle Temple) and was awarded the Diplock Major Scholarship and was a Harmsworth Entrance Exhibitioner. He appears frequently as an advocate before international arbitral tribunals and the English High Court, including in ss. 67 and 68 challenges to arbitral awards. He is also a Part II registered advocate before the DIFC Courts and has appeared before the DIFC Court of Appeal in one of the seminal cases on the jurisdiction of the DIFC Courts. James also sits as a Recorder (part-time judge) in criminal matters.

James has been recognized for more than a decade as one of the leading international arbitration lawyers under 45 years of age. For several years, he has been cited by Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration as a “Future Leader” in the partners category, by Expert Guides as “Rising Star” for International Arbitration, and by Chambers and Partners and Legal 500 UK in the International Arbitration and Commercial Litigation: Premium categories. Clients report to Legal 500 UK that James is an “experienced advocate with sound judgement,” “of high intellectual quality and also very pleasant to work with,” and “exceptional – incredibly intelligent and dedicated.”

James has authored several publications and frequently presents on topics related to public international law and international arbitration. Before joining Fried Frank, James worked at one of the world’s leading international arbitration practices.

Work highlights:

  • Representing a global pharmaceutical company in connection with a €2 billion arbitration claim for fraud and breaches of warranty in connection with an M&A transaction, involving allegations of wrongdoing across over 10 European countries.
  • Advising a European gas buyer in a gas price arbitration in Southern Europe under the ICC Rules relating to a long-term pipeline gas contract with a sum in dispute in excess of US$1 billion.
  • Representing an East Asian buyer in a multibillion-dollar pricing dispute under a long-term LNG supply agreement.
  • Representing a leading European pharmaceutical company in €500 million arbitration arising under a long-term development and distribution agreement.
  • Representing and counselling a Middle Eastern state in a series of public international law disputes under peace and economic development treaties relating to electricity, customs tariffs and taxation. The disputes are subject to ad hoc inter-state arbitration.
  • Conducting the advocacy in a jurisdictional challenge to a London-seated ICC arbitral award in Telecom of Kosovo v. Dardafon [2017] EWHC 1326 (Comm).
  • Conducting the advocacy in a leading English High Court decision on challenges to arbitrators under the IBA Rules on Conflicts of Interest in International Arbitration: Sierra Fishing v. Farran [2015] EWHC 140 (Comm), [2015] 1 All ER (Comm).
  • Conducting the advocacy in a leading decision of the DIFC Court of Appeal on the scope of jurisdiction of the DIFC Courts over non-DIFC entities: Investment Group Private Limited v. Standard Chartered Bank: CA-002-2018.
  • Representing a U.S. aerospace and defense multinational in two parallel US$250 million ICC arbitrations governed by Spanish law concerning disputes under a joint venture agreement with a Spanish company.
  • Representing a leading Indonesian conglomerate in a US$1 billion contentious restructuring: Re Indah Kiat International Finance Company BV [2016] EWHC 246 (Ch).

Professional associations

  • Member, London Court of International Arbitration
  • Member, Chartered Institude of Arbitrators
  • Member, Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA)
  • Member, International Chamber of Commerce
  • Member, BIICL

News and recognition

Insights and analysis

Events

Speaking engagements |

GAR Interactive: Energy Disputes
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