Commercial parties seeking to avoid disruption increasingly turn to alternate dispute resolution (ADR) rather than litigation to resolve conflicts. We guide clients through this complex process, from choosing the appropriate forum to selecting appropriate arbitrators for particular industries and dispute types, navigating procedural rules, and developing case strategies targeted to arbitration panels. Our lawyers try cases to completion in a wide variety of U.S. and international arbitral forums, including AAA, JAMS, FINRA, and ICC, and regularly litigate arbitration-related disputes in court. We are also experienced in enforcing or challenging arbitration decisions.
Our attorneys' arbitration/ADR experience includes the following matters, among others:
- Sempra. Obtained a jury verdict on behalf of San Diego-based Sempra Generation following a four-week jury trial in a case challenging Sempra’s $6.6 billion energy supply contract with the California Department of Water Resources (“DWR”). Our lawyers also successfully defended Sempra in two AAA arbitration proceedings challenging the interpretation and implementation of Sempra’s contract with DWR.
- E-Recycling LLC. Represented E-Recycling LLC and ERV, LLC, in a dispute regarding the construction of the litigants’ joint venture agreement. The specific provision dealt with the parties’ right to call the other’s ownership tried to a single judge arbitration panel in 2013. After considering the parties’ pre-trial and post-trial briefing, and holding a full evidentiary hearing, the arbitrator rendered a ruling in favor of the firm’s client.
- Highland Capital Management. Represented Highland Capital Management in a 2013 AAA arbitration against investment bankers for wrongful termination of a portfolio management contract.
- NJ Transit. Representation of NJ Transit in a binding arbitration concerning hundreds of millions of dollars of property insurance coverage that the insurers have said is not available for damage caused by Superstorm Sandy due to the operation of sub-limits in the applicable insurance policies. NJ Transit had $400 million in property insurance coverage in place at the time of Sandy, and has estimated its Sandy losses at more than $300 million.
- Move, Inc. Representation of Move in an arbitration where the claimant sought a multi-million dollar indemnification award arising from alleged breaches of representations and warranties made in connection with a $110 million asset purchase agreement. A confidential settlement was reached through mediation.
- StarSight Telecast, Inc. Representation of StarSight Telecast in securing an arbitration award against General Instrument in connection with a substantial trade-secret dispute involving electronic program guide technology. The amount of the award is subject to a confidentiality agreement.
- Halliburton. Representation of Halliburton against a competitor in an arbitration to determine infringement and royalty for patents related to hydraulic fracturing.
- Medtronic. Representation of Medtronic in a series of patent infringement suits against Cordis related to coronary stent design. These suits, which have since been settled, included a district court infringement case in which Medtronic asserted its stent patents against Cordis as well as five separate arbitration proceedings adjudicating the terms of various license agreements between the parties.
- Joltid Limited. Represented Joltid Limited in major litigation against Skype Technologies involving the copyright to software underlying the Skype Internet telephony application and service. After filing an extensive complaint, the parties reached a business resolution of both the copyright litigation and a parallel U.K. arbitration.
- MetroPCS. Representation of MetroPCS as lead counsel against Merrill Lynch on $100 million claim for securities fraud and negligent misrepresentation relating to auction rate securities with claims brought both in state court in Texas and in FINRA arbitration.
- Les Mills International. Representation of Les Mills International as lead trial counsel in several cases and arbitrations involving trademark, false advertising, and unfair competition claims, successfully handling numerous motions for temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction.
- Hughes Electronics. Served as counsel for Hughes Electronics in a purchase price adjustment arbitration against Boeing resulting from the sale of Hughes’ satellite business to Boeing. Boeing sought adjustments of over $650 million in the arbitration, which was conducted by KPMG LLP.
- Randall’s Food Markets. Representation of Randall’s Food against Fleming in an two-week arbitration that resulted in our attorneys securing the termination of a $400 million per year contract. The decisoin cleared the way for Randall’s to be acquired by a major national supermarket chain.
- British Energy. Represented British Energy in arbitration concerning power purchase contract. Final award issued in favor of client, denying all of plaintiff’s claims.
- Quorum Health Resources. Represented Quorum Health Resources in a breach of contract arbitration related to the healthcare management industry.
Media & Events
- Lisa Houssiere provided commentary in the article "International Arbitration Experts Discuss The Major Challenges for Arbitration In 2020," published in the Mealey's International Arbitration Report04.28.2020
- Lisa Houssiere and Cecilia Ibarra-van Oostenrijk Profiled in Article "McKool Smith Hires Former Norton Rose Duo for Growing LatAm Offering"05.09.2019
- Los Angeles Daily Journal Ranks McKool Smith Hennigan as a "Leading Southern California Litigation Firm"06.25.2008