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About Thomas W. Walsh

Thomas is Special Counsel in Freshfields’ US international arbitration practice group.

His practice is focused on complex arbitration (commercial and investor-state) and litigation matters, and management of multi-jurisdictional crises and disputes. He has served as counsel in numerous arbitrations under most of the major arbitration rules, and litigations in U.S. federal and state courts. Thomas also serves as arbitrator in commercial arbitrations.

Thomas has been recognized in a number of publications, and writes and speaks frequently on international legal matters. Notably, in 2015, he co-authored A Guide to the 2006 Amendments to the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration with Howard Holtzmann and Joseph Neuhaus. The Guide is the pre-eminent treatise on the 2006 Amendments to the Model Law, which forms the basis for many jurisdictions’ arbitration laws. In 2011, Mr. Walsh co-authored an introduction to the publication of the London Court of International Arbitration’s decisions on arbitrator challenges. The introduction, which was published in the journal Arbitration International, a publication of Oxford Press, perennially ranks as one of the most-read articles on that journal’s on-line platform.

Thomas is involved with a number of not-for-profit and professional organizations, including as a member of CPR’s Brazil Advisory Board, the editorial board of Arbitration International, and the New York City Bar Association’s International Commercial Disputes Committee.

Prior to practicing law, Thomas was a Fulbright Scholar in Ecuador, where he worked from 2000 to 2003.

Recent work

Commercial Arbitration

  • Representing a major European telecommunications company in a pair of ICC arbitrations against a Turkish conglomerate involving claims of over $1.5 billion arising from a share purchase and shareholders agreements.
  • Representing a global airline in an ICDR arbitration among the partners of an airline alliance relating to alleged breaches of a profit-sharing agreement.
  • Counsel to a Brazil-based global financial institution in a LCIA arbitration arising from a trademark licensing agreement.
  • Representing a multinational electronics company in an AAA arbitration with a patent licensor concerning alleged breaches of a licensing agreement.
  • Advising a global telecommunications company in a LCIA arbitration arising from a joint-venture agreement.
  • Counsel to a European pharmaceutical company in an ad hoc “baseball” arbitration against a number of other multinational pharmaceutical companies arising from a patent-licensing agreement.
  • Represented a South American manufacturer in bringing claims seeking more than $85 million in a pair of ICC arbitrations against its former sales agent in a Persian Gulf country and the agent’s shareholders.

Commercial Litigation

  • Representing BHP Billiton Ltd., BHP Billiton plc and current and former directors and officers in a putative securities class action concerning an iron-ore mine in Brazil.
  • Counsel to Kinross Gold Corporation and former executives in a putative securities class action concerning the development of a gold mine in Mauritania.
  • Advising a multinational cement company on a potential litigation in US federal court against a South American country arising from the expropriation of a cement plant.
  • Represented The Bank of Nova Scotia in litigation brought in New York state court by former shareholders of Grupo Financiero Inverlat, S.A. de C.V. (“GFI”), a Mexican bank
    holding company, in connection with the provision of emergency liquidity to a GFI subsidiary during the Mexican peso crisis.

Investor-State Arbitration

  • Advising Centerra Gold Inc. in a UNCITRAL arbitration with the Kyrgyz Republic relating to disputes over a mining concession.
  • Counsel to a project company in a $4+ billion mining project in a sub-Saharan African country in connection with “creeping expropriatory” measures taken by the sovereign, including preparation for a possible ICSID arbitration.
  • Represented a U.S. hedge fund in a UNCITRAL arbitration administered by the Permanent Court of Arbitration against an Eastern European state in connection with the expropriation of the fund’s rights to certain carbon sequestration projects.

Regulatory and Internal Investigations

  • Represented global financial institutions in investigations related to OFAC sanctions and anti-money laundering compliance.
  • Advised companies in the extractive industries in investigations of possible FCPA violations.

Qualifications

Education

  • 2006, UC Berkeley School of Law, J.D.
  • 1999, George Washington University, B.A.

Bar admissions

  • New York 

Clerkships

  • The Honorable Juan R. Torruella, United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit, 2006-2007

Professional Activities

  • CPR, Brazil Advisory Board, 2017-present.
  • Deputy General Editor, Arbitration International, 2007-present.
  • New York City Bar Association’s International Commercial Disputes Committee, Member, 2016-present; Secretary, 2013-2016; New York City Bar Association’s Arbitration
    Committee, 2010-2013.
  • Chair, Institute for Transnational Arbitration’s (ITA) Young Arbitrator’s Initiative, 2011-2013; Member, ITA Strategic Planning Committee, 2013-present.

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, International Arbitration 2018, Practising Law Institute, June 2018.
  • Panelist, CPR Brazil Congress, São Paulo, April 2018.
  • Panel Member, Best Practices in International Commercial Arbitration, Harvard Law School, October 2016.
  • Panel Member, Challenges to Arbitrators in International Arbitration, New York State Bar Association, Global Law Week, New York, New York, May 2016.
  • Presentation, Proposed Amendments to NY’s Civil Procedure Rules, Article 75 (Arbitration), New York City Bar Association, International Commercial Disputes Committee,February 2015
  • Panel Member, Investment Treaty Arbitration in Latin America: Understanding the Current Regime and Predicting What Will Come Next, NY State Bar Association, São Paulo, October 2015.
  • Panel Moderator, Claims Against Foreign Sovereigns, New
  • Panel Moderator, Claims Against Foreign Sovereigns, New York State Bar Association, Global Law Week, New York, New York, May 2015.
  • Panel Member, Corruption and International Arbitration, University of Pennsylvania, School of Law, April 2015.
  • Presentation, Hot Topics in International Commercial Arbitration, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, December 2014.
  • Presentation, Current Issues in the Practice of International Commercial Arbitration, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, September 2013.
  • Panel Moderator, Arbitration from the Arbitrator’s Perspective, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, 8th Annual Dallas Roundtable, Dallas, Texas, June 2013.
  • Presentation, Current Issues in the Practice of Investor-State Arbitration, University of California, Berkeley,School of Law, April 2013.
  • Presentation, The New UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules for Transparency in Investment-Treaty Arbitrations, New York City Bar Association, Arbitration Committee, February 2013.
  • Panel Moderator, Do Moral Damages Have a Place in Investment Arbitration?, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, 2nd Annual Winter Roundtable, Miami, Florida, January 2013.
  • Panel Moderator, In-House Counsel Perspectives, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, 7th Annual Dallas Roundtable, Dallas, Texas, June 2012.
  • Introductory Remarks, Building Skills in International Arbitration – Do’s and Don’ts, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, 5th Annual Americas Roundtable, Santiago, Chile, April 2012.
  • Presentation, Lessons Learned from the LCIA Arbitrator Challenge Decisions, New York City Bar Association, Arbitration Committee, New York, New York, March 2012.
  • Panel Moderator, Repeat Appointments: A Compromise of Arbitrator Independence or Impartiality?, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, Winter Roundtable, February 2012.
  • Panel Member, Written Evidence in International Arbitration, Institute for Transnational Arbitration, 6th Annual Dallas Roundtable, Dallas, Texas, June 2011.
  • Presentation, Class Arbitration After AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion et al., New York City Bar Association, Arbitration Committee, New York, New York, May 2011.

Publications

  • Second Edition, Arb. Int’l (with Ruth Teitelbaum) (forthcoming) LCIA Arbitrator Challenge Digests

  • 21(2) NY Business Law Journal 9 (2017) (with Joseph E. Neuhaus) Senate Votes to Overturn CFPB Arbitration Rules

  • Agora on Gary Born’s International Commercial Arbitration (2d ed.), 31(4) Arb. Int’l 533 (2015) Introduction

  • (co-authored with Howard M. Holtzmann, Joseph E. Neuhaus, and Edda Kristjansdottir) (2015) A Guide to the 2006 Amendments to the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration: Legislative History and Commentary

  • LCIA Arbitrator Challenge Digests, 27(3) Arb. Int’l 283 (co-authored with Ruth Teitelbaum) (2011). Introduction

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