On the one hand, the phrase “general commercial litigation” is to most self-explanatory; on the other hand, it probably does not do justice to the nature of and goal oriented commercial service we render to our international business clients.
Commercial disputes are disruptive to any business, diverting time, energy and resources from the company’s primary purpose and goals. In providing legal counsel to our clients, in particular on contract matters, we first seek to provide input at the negotiation stage, ensuring that agreements they enter into protect their rights and further their commercial purposes. That requires clear and concise drafting, designed to promote workable commercial agreements understood by both sides, and reducing the prospect of future disputes. We have advised clients on contract formation in a wide range of industries and on a variety of cross-border deals.
When commercial disputes do arise, however, our first priority is to quickly analyze the problem, both from a legal and commercial point of view, identify the issues and the strengths/weaknesses of a position, and then counsel a client on the options that are achievable and consistent with its particular business goals. This necessitates both analysis and listening, because the ultimate path need not just lead to the courthouse, but necessarily has to incorporate consideration of the circumstances unique to each client’s posture and goals. This pre-litigation critique is critical, both in terms of speed and comprehensiveness, as it often represents the last, best change to settle a matter on terms that address the client’s best business interests.
If litigation is required, however, or if the client is the target of an aggressive and litigious claimant, we stand ready to meet that challenge be it litigation or arbitration, utilizing the firm’s full resources to achieve a successful result.
Our general commercial practice is diverse and cannot be neatly categorized. Some representative matters include:
- Successful arbitration of a $35M+ claim for breach of a long term gas supply agreement in Central America;
- Negotiating and drafting an asset purchase agreement for multiple LNG plants, for erection overseas, totaling $94M;
- Counseling a client on the drafting and formation of an international distribution contract for healthcare products;
- Successful recovery in arbitration of a $1.1M claim for wrongful cancellation of an ethanol sales contract;
- Defending litigation against a major US-based fuel supplier/distributor for breach of a gasoline sales agreement;
- Negotiating and drafting an asset transfer agreement relating to a chain of overseas fueling stations;
- Assisting with defense in China of breach of petcoke supply agreement;
- Drafting international service contracts relating to supervision of foreign construction projects, foreign employment, etc.;
- Drafting foreign minerals purchaser’s sales contract and standard terms and conditions for all sales in Central America and the Caribbean;
- Negotiation and drafting long term LNG supply agreement for purchases in excess of $100M;
- International arbitration involving cancellation of coal sales contract due to quality issues;
- Prosecuting indemnity action for recovery of damages suffered in respect to bulk materials supply agreement;
- International arbitration over breach of coal sales contract by Australian coal mine alleging force majeure;
- Negotiating purchase of LNG conversion facility from foreign manufacturer;
- Handling litigation involving the sale of abandoned cargo under terms of the Uniform Commercial Code;
- Counseling client on inadvertent disclosure of counterparty’s confidential information;
- Handling a $10M Transition Agreement dispute on behalf of a major US-based pharmaceutical company;
- Formation of an LLC for underwater exploratory salvage operation;
- Defending claim of $60M for improper release of electronic equipment;
- Trademarking business logo/names for Nasdaq traded entity and for U.S. based musicians.