GAP HEADNOTE SERIES – EPISODE 1: ENGLAND & WALES
Episode 1 (26 January 2023) featured a discussion of the UK Supreme Court decision in Haliburton v Chubb, as part of our ‘A Case in Time’ Headnote series.
Paul Brumpton and Opeyemi Longe of White & Case, the authors of the GAP chapter on England & Wales, considered issues of arbitrator impartiality and the duty of disclosure, followed by comments from Dr. Johanna Büstgens of Hanefeld Legal (short bios of the speakers below) and a Q&A with the participants.
In more detail, “quite often, arbitrators accept appointments from parties in separate but related arbitration proceedings involving one common party. Despite this practice, there was less clarity under English law about any duty imposed on the arbitrator to disclose such appointment and especially whether the failure of disclosure can give rise to a valid concern about arbitrator bias. The UK Supreme Court decision in Halliburton v Chubb clarifies these interesting points of significance to the international arbitration community. In this case, the Court affirmed that arbitrators have a legal duty to disclose circumstances that would or might give rise to doubts as to an arbitrator’s impartiality, which may include acceptance of multiple appointments in overlapping arbitrations.”
ABOUT THE GAP AND THE SPEAKERS
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Paul Brumpton is a partner in the Firm’s market leading international arbitration practice and is based in the London office. Paul advises clients in complex disputes and acts as an advocate in international arbitrations. He has broad experience across a number of sectors and a focus on the construction and energy industries. Overall, he has an excellent track record, successfully building and implementing sound and innovative strategies that help his clients win. Paul has acted as counsel in arbitrations across the globe, including in London, Paris, Geneva, Zurich, New York, Miami, Singapore, Hong Kong and Riyadh. He also has experience of Dispute Adjudication Boards and a broad range of litigation in the English Courts (including anti-suit injunctions in support of arbitration). Paul is qualified in both England & Wales, and New York. He is responsible for leading the Firm’s international arbitration oral advocacy training program in EMEA. Paul has previously worked in the International Arbitration Group of White & Case’s New York and Paris offices. Before joining White & Case, Paul taught English and European law at the University of Cambridge Centre for English and European Legal Studies at Warsaw University.
Opeyemi Longe is an Associate in White & Case’s International Arbitration group in London. His practice focuses on international commercial arbitration and investment arbitration. Prior to joining White & Case, Opeyemi was an Associate in the dispute resolution practice of a leading commercial firm in Nigeria, during which he represented multinational corporations and financial institutions in litigations and arbitrations in Nigeria.
Dr. Johanna Büstgens (moderator) acts as counsel in arbitration and state court proceedings. She also acts as arbitrator and, as secretary to arbitral tribunals in large-volume and complex proceedings. The focus of her practice is energy law (in particular disputes involving long-term energy supply contracts and price adjustments), construction & engineering (including FIDIC model contracts), international trade and distribution law and international commercial and sales law. Johanna studied at the Bucerius Law School and the University of Oxford (Brasenose College). She holds a doctorate of law from Bucerius Law School in the field of international arbitration for which she completed a research stay at the University of California, Berkeley. She completed her legal traineeship inter alia at the ICC International Court of Arbitration in Paris. She has also previously worked as a research assistant at a chair for private international and international commercial law at Bucerius Law School. Johanna currently teaches international contract law at FOM University of Applied Science Hamburg. Her working languages are German and English.