Webcast: Enforcing Arbitral Awards and Judgments Against Foreign Entities

October 14, 2015

​Obtaining an arbitral award or judgment against a foreign entity is only half the battle, as both state and privately owned companies often attempt to shield their overseas assets from creditors. This webcast illuminates the many enforcement tools available to creditors, including best practices for gathering information about the debtor’s assets and revenue streams, the procedures for recognizing international arbitral awards and domesticating judgments in the United States, and remedies such as pre-judgment attachment, asset freezes, turnover orders, and other forms of injunctive relief in aid of post-judgment enforcement.

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Robert L. Weigel, a senior partner in the New York office of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, is an experienced trial lawyer with a focus on litigation concerning complex financial transactions, particularly for international clients. He has extensive experience obtaining, domesticating and enforcing multi-million dollar arbitral awards and judgments. Mr. Weigel has applied his understanding of financial transactions to develop cutting-edge enforcement strategies. Most recently he domesticated a $186 million arbitral award for Yukos Capital against a subsidiary of Rosneft, the Russian state-owned oil company, and successfully defended the judgment on appeal. (Yukos Capital v. Samaraneftegaz, 592 Fed. App’x 8 (2d Cir. 2014)) He has frozen counterfeiters’ bank accounts in Chinese banks (Gucci America, Inc. v. Bank of China, 768 F.3d 122 (2d Cir. 2014)), executed upon a judgment obtained by the judgment debtor in a wholly unrelated lawsuit in Texas by serving Exxon with a restraining notice in New York. (Breezevale Ltd. v. Dickinson, 262 A.D.2d 248, 249 (1st Dep’t 1999)) and successfully reversed a fraudulent conveyance of 700 acres of land and defeated a bank’s mortgage on the property. (Orr v. Kinderhill 991 F.2d. 31 (2d in 1993)) He obtained a $420 million prejudgment attachment against a Russian oil company ultimately resulting in the collection of the entire arbitral award and won a “landmark case” in the New York Court of Appeals affirming the ability of a creditor to attach the debtor’s membership interests in-out-of state LLCs. (Hotel 71 v. Falor, 14 N.Y.3d 303 (2010)) By focusing on enforcement at the start of proceedings rather than at the end, Mr. Weigel has delivered meaningful recoveries for numerous clients.

Penny Madden, an English qualified partner in the London office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, is Co-Chair of the firm’s International Arbitration Practice Group and a member of the firm’s Transnational Dispute Resolution Practice Group. Ms. Madden focuses her contentious practice on international arbitration and cross-border disputes. She has experience in all key aspects of international arbitration (commercial and investment treaty) with particular experience in shareholder, SPA, telecommunications, media, international trade and insurance disputes. She represents clients across the globe in a wide variety of arbitration proceedings, including those before the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and London Maritime Arbitrators Association (LMAA), as well as in ad hoc proceedings. She has a wide range of experience in enforcing awards, both against commercial entities and states, across a multitude of jurisdictions, and has represented clients in enforcement proceedings before the English High Court and the Court of the British Virgin Islands. In addition to representing clients as counsel and advocate, Ms. Madden regularly sits as an arbitrator.

Anne M. Coyle Ms. Coyle’s practice focuses on complex commercial and transnational disputes. She has represented clients across a variety of industries, including financial services, energy, telecommunications, and fashion. Ms. Coyle has extensive experience in enforcement of international arbitral awards and foreign judgments, including representing former shareholders of YUKOS Oil Company and their affiliates in complex multi-jurisdictional litigation arising from the forced bankruptcy and liquidation of Yukos in the Russian Federation. In this matter, Gibson Dunn obtained a $186 million judgment confirming an ICC arbitral award in favor of Yukos Capital S.a.r.l. against OAO Samaraneftegaz and affirmance by the Second Circuit, and obtained a $420 million pre-judgment attachment against OJSC Oil Company Rosneft on behalf of Yukos Capital S.a.r.l. in aid of enforcement of an ICC arbitral award. Ms. Coyle has also represented luxury brands in numerous matters resulting in Gibson Dunn obtaining multi-million dollar awards and asset freezes against foreign defendants, most recently having won a $1 billion judgment for NIKE, Inc. and Converse, Inc. on August 20, 2015 against 466 Chinese counterfeiters who had operated hundreds of websites targeted to consumers in the United States.