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As the effects of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) continue to be felt around the world, businesses face significant levels of instability and uncertainty caused by weakened financial markets and disruption to supply chains, workplace operations and business pipelines. It is almost certain that such instability and uncertainty will result in a growth in the number and types of disputes, and we have already seen judicial systems twist and turn to adapt to the new “norm,” so what will this mean for the future of disputes? The Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team explores that exact question in the below series of thought leadership pieces and are here to guide clients through these challenging times and beyond.

 

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Author

Steve Abraham is a partner in the Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team based in London and serves as the firm's Dispute Resolution chair for the EMEA region. Steve has a particular focus on international arbitration and ADR in the energy, mining and infrastructure projects, often involving projects in Africa, the Middle East and CIS countries. In addition to acting in commercial disputes Steve advises in relation to investment treaty issues and in relation to risk and project management issues during the course of projects. The current edition of Chambers & Partners describes Steve as "an impressive lawyer" who is "nice to deal with". Previous editions have described him as "superb", "very knowledgeable in construction" and "really strong on large-scale infrastructure and mining work", and commented that "his teamwork is great". He is also included in Legal 500's newly published International Arbitration Powerlist and as a leading practitioner in Euromoney's Expert Guide to Commercial Arbitration. Steve writes and speaks regularly on international arbitration and construction law issues.

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Marc Florent is a partner in the Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team based in London. Marc joined the Firm from another leading multinational firm in 2019 having been a partner there for 17 years and having been involved in several of the most significant cases in his field. Marc is a native English and French speaker. Chambers 2019 describes Marc as "notable for his expertise in structured finance disputes, particularly with regard to matters involving financial derivatives". In the Chambers 2020 Banking Litigation category, sources describe him as "a very good technical lawyer and a decisive team leader," who can "deploy his very substantial litigation experience to highly impressive effect."

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Henry Garfield is a senior associate in Baker McKenzie's Dispute Resolution department based in London. Henry's practice focuses on fraud, asset tracing, internal investigations and business crime. He also undertakes general commercial litigation. Henry has just completed an 11 month secondment to the Serious Fraud Office, during which he was the Case Lawyer on an investigation into a £60 million fraud. The investigation involved unravelling trust and company structures in several offshore jurisdictions and has recently resulted in two individuals being charged with fraud and forgery offences.

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Yindi Gesinde is a senior associate and solicitor advocate in Baker McKenzie's Compliance and Investigations and Dispute Resolution Departments in London. Yindi's practice includes complex and high-value international and domestic commercial litigation for multinational clients, with particular expertise in anti-bribery and corruption investigations, compliance and trust litigation.

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Joanna Ludlam is a partner in the Dispute Resolution team in Baker McKenzie's London office, where she leads the market-leading Regulatory, Public & Media law team and also co-leads the office's Compliance & Investigations Practice Group. At an international level, she co-chairs the Firm's Global Compliance & Investigations Steering Committee. In 2016, Joanna was named as one of The Lawyer’s “Hot 100” for her practice, and is recognised by Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners.

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Hugh Lyons is a partner in Baker McKenzie’s Dispute Resolution department, based in London. He has extensive experience of high-profile and high-value commercial and financial disputes. His clients include major corporates, financial institutions and leading insolvency practitioners. Much of his work arises from disputed financing transactions, restructuring and insolvency, fraud and financial misconduct. He is also actively involved in the Firm's pro bono offering. Hugh is recognised for his practice by Legal 500, while Super Lawyers ranks him a “Top Rated Attorney in London” in the categories of commercial litigation, fraud and insolvency & bankruptcy. Hugh is a member of the Insolvency Lawyers Association and a fellow of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals.

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Andy is a partner in the Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team based in London. He advises clients on international, commercial and investment treaty arbitration as well as in complex, often multijurisdictional litigation, mediations and expert determinations. He also advises clients on issues pertaining to private and public international law. Andy is recommended in Who's Who Legal: Arbitration 2018 and individually ranked in the field of International Arbitration by Chambers UK, who describe him as "a 'superb' practitioner," and "very commercial" and also recognized by Legal 500, who call him "an arbitration doyen."

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Anthony is a partner with Baker McKenzie's Dispute Resolution team and chair of the market-leading Trusts Disputes group in London. Anthony specialises in advising clients engaged in disputes related to private wealth, succession, trusts and private banking. In such disputes, he acts for trustees, executors, protectors, beneficiaries and interested third parties and is very familiar with all the major offshore jurisdictions. Anthony is recognised as a Band 1 lawyer in the field of Private Wealth Disputes and International Private Client: Contentious by Chambers, who describe him as " knowledgeable, cool-headed and solutions-oriented," with clients adding that he has "excellent instincts informed by some really fantastic experience." Similarly, Legal 500 rank Anthony as a Leading Individual in the field of Contentious Trusts and Probate, citing a client in describing him as "top international trusts litigator in London." He is also listed as a Leading Practitioner in Euromoney's Expert Guide to Trusts and Estates, in the UK Best Lawyers list for Litigation, and has led his team to win the Chambers High Net Worth Contentious Trusts and Estates Team of the Year 2019. Anthony is a founding member of the Commercial Fraud Lawyers Association and a member of ACTAPS. He was elected to the ACTAPS Committee in 2018.

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Ed Poulton is a partner in the Firm's Dispute Resolution team, based in London. A key name in the arbitration community, Ed sits as an arbitrator in ICC and LCIA arbitrations, and is the consulting editor of a seminal text on the arbitration of M&A disputes. He also sits on the steering committee for the Firm’s Global International Arbitration Practice Group. Ed is recognised in the fields of international arbitration and public international law by Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners.

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Francesca Richmond is a partner in the Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team based in London. Francesca joined Baker McKenzie in 2004 and was admitted as a solicitor in September 2006. She attained higher rights of audience to act as a solicitor-advocate in 2009. Francesca has been seconded to Baker McKenzie's offices in Chicago, Washington and Sydney as well as to clients Barclays Bank PLC, the BBC Trust and O2. Francesca was a marshall at the Royal Courts of Justice in 1998 and in 2000 sitting with a High Court judge.

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Charles Thomson is a partner and solicitor advocate in Baker McKenzie’s Dispute Resolution Practice Group in London. He co-manages the Business Crime Unit, and is part of the Financial Institutions Disputes, Contentious Trusts and Compliance and Investigations Groups. Charles joined the Firm as a trainee in 2002, and concurrently spent three months on secondment as a judicial assistant at the Royal Courts of Justice in the Civil Appeals Division. A solicitor advocate since 2007, Charles appears as an advocate in all Higher Courts in England and Wales. Chambers and Legal 500 both commend Charles for his legal practice. Charles is also listed as a Rising Star in Litigation by Legal Week.

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Gemma is a partner and solicitor advocate in the Baker McKenzie Dispute Resolution team based in London. She joined the team in September 2008 and completed a five-month client secondment to the litigation team at Barclays Wealth in 2012. She has been recognized for the excellence of her practice in winning the Editor's Choice Award for Outstanding Individual of the Year at the CityWealth Future Leaders Awards 2016, the Silver Award as Woman of the Year - Rising Star in the Citywealth Power Women Awards 2016, and has been listed in the Citywealth 2018 Future Leaders Top 100. Chambers cite clients who describe her as "extremely pleasant but also tough as nails," "very bright and is a joy to work with," "a walking encyclopaedia" and "incredibly talented, hard-working and a delight to be around."