Zaiwalla
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Zaiwalla Zaiwalla & Co is a London-based law firm specialising in international disputes, the first law firm in the square mile of the City of London started by a solicitor born outside Europe. Over the past 40 years we have been involved in some of the highest-profile cases in the UK. Clients often come to us after finding they have lost the preliminary stages of their case having instructed a 'magic circle' law firm.

Many have been left with a costly judgment against them, a huge bill for legal fees and a feeling that their case was not given the due attention it required. Firstly, we focus Partner attention on each case we take on. All of our Partners have worked on some of the largest and most significant disputes in the UK Courts in recent years. Key decisions are not left to overworked and inexperienced junior lawyers.

Secondly, we commit to taking new and fresh approach to each of our client's matters. Time and again our team has won a case for a client and in the course of proceedings set a legal precedent.
Highlights

read more › Being the first law firm in the one square mile of London set up by a non-white solicitor we remain committed to pursuing diversity and equality in the legal profession. It is for this reason that the firm has since 2017 maintained an annual scholarship for one Indian female law student who would not otherwise have the means, to come to the UK to study a one-year Masters in International Law at Sommerville college at Oxford University. The hope behind this scholarship is that these young women will forge international connections, advance their own professional careers and contribute to an advancing global legal framework.

read more › With decades of experience in ground-breaking arbitrations that have defined the law in the arbitration field and beyond, we are typically called upon to deal with complex, multi-jurisdictional arbitrations, often against the world's largest law firms. Our clients choose us for our high-quality legal advice, defined strategy, and streamlined advice. Having handled matters in most commercial sectors, we are able to get straight to the heart of the matter and quickly advise on the best route for your business if arbitral proceedings are on the horizon.

read more › We are a leading London law firm in complex, cross border litigation for international clients from the world's fastest developing economies including Russia, India, China, across Africa and the Middle East. Most of the cases we handle are conducted against large law firms, as there are usually high amounts at stake. See our Recent Successes section for an example of the level of cases we have experience in. Our lawyers have diverse cultural backgrounds, speaking French, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Arabic, Hindi and Urdu.

read more › Corporations and the people who manage them are often unknowingly at risk of accusations of breaching international law. Overnight they can become targets of sanctions for reasons they are unaware of, paralysing both their business and income streams. Failing to get the right legal advice can have catastrophic results on both individual freedoms as well as the future of these businesses. We have worked for over a decade for businesses and individuals who have been subject to various sanctions regimes, suffering from the corresponding travel bans, asset freezes and other methods of state sanction across the globe.

read more › Zaiwalla and Co have been active in the African region for over 30 years advising clients in respect of their disputes involving commercial, constructions, consumer goods & regulatory matters both in an advisory capacity as well as in complex litigation or arbitration matters. We have a comprehensive understanding of commercial, cultural and political challenges that may arise in certain African states and are well versed in dealing with them through our longstanding relationships with local law firms and lawyers.

read more › Zaiwalla & Co was one of the first western law firms to establish an office in China, and the firm maintained a presence in Beijing for 8 years. We acted for Chinese state-owned companies in their London and ICC international arbitrations, and in fact acted for the Chinese government in the only three arbitrations in London in which it has ever been involved. The firm facilitated a political mediation between 10 Downing Street and the Chinese Government relating to the handing over of Hong Kong.

read more › Our relationship with India dates to 1984 when the firm was appointed as solicitors for the Indian High Commission. India's first reported case in the House of Lords was handled by our firm - President of India v La Pintada Compagnia Navigacia SA, [1985] AC 104. Banks such as The State Bank of India, Canara Bank, Bank of Baroda, Bank of India and ICICI Bank. Energy companies such as Indian Oil Corporation, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC) and Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB). Shipping companies such as Shipping Corporation of India, Essar Shipping and Foresight Shipping.

read more › Zaiwalla & Co's close relationship with Iran dates to 2009 when few law firms in the City of London were willing to accept instructions from Iranian clients. We were one of the first to assist Iranian corporates and entities with sanctions disputes. Today the team has extensive experience of issues affecting Iranian business and individuals, navigating sanctions and the ancillary effects of such regimes. The firm successfully acted for Bank Mellat challenging the sanctions imposed on it by both the UK Government and Council of European Union ("EU") and was able to ensure that Bank Mellat recovers the damages caused to it as a result of those sanctions.

read more › Latin America is a growing economy and Zaiwalla & Co has assisted Latin American entities in commercial litigation proceedings before the English Courts and in maritime matters. Our lawyers have broad experience in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings involving Latin American parties and laws, and we have Spanish and Portuguese speakers as part of our team. Zaiwalla & Co is currently acting for the Central Bank of Venezuela in a dispute in relation to Venezuela's gold reserves, worth around US$1.8 billion held at the Bank of England, and in relation to the USD 120 million proceeds from a gold swap transaction with Deutsche Bank.

read more › Zaiwalla & Co have been representing clients from Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and other countries of the Former Soviet Union Region for a long time. Companies and individuals can rely on the expertise and experience of lawyers qualified both in the Region and England. Our team knows not only legislation and case law of jurisdictions in question, but also understands cultural and historic background of the clients and, therefore, is able to provide them with in-depth understanding of disputes and matters that they are seeking advice on.

read more › We were the only boutique law firm in Chambers & Partners' 2020 list of the Top Banking litigation law firms in London. We have acted for both international banks and defendants for many years in both pre-action matters and High Court disputes. Advising an International Bank in a US$36 million dispute with a syndicate partner and borrower relating to a UK retail center. Punjab National Bank v Pesco Beam - Successfully defending a US$40 million claim brought against defendant companies based in the US and India including an award of indemnity costs in favour of our client.

read more › Advising the world's second largest Oil and gas company Rosneft in overturning the largest ever arbitral award of US$50billion made against it, known as 'the Yukos award'. Our team were instructed as co-counsel to develop the successful strategy. Advising a listed Indian energy company in two SIAC international arbitrations with a value of US$320million arising out of a dispute with lenders following a private equity transaction with international investors to consolidate its shareholding in a company controlling major international assets.

read more › Whether you are establishing a joint venture in the UK or developing your business worldwide our multi-cultural, multi-lingual lawyers can advise on every aspect of the venture. We have recently advised on corporate matters involving Chinese, Indian, Iranian, UAE, Qatari and Nigerian companies. The law governing company formation, operation and insolvency is often complex and prescriptive. Our firm is regularly instructed by Insolvency practitioners, companies, creditors, shareholders, and directors to assist them with their disputes.

read more › Shipping law is the origin of our practice and we have more than 40 years' experience in shipping disputes, many of which appear in the official English Law Reports. The case of "La Pintada" remains to date the test case concerning the legal liability for compound interest in a maritime dispute. We provide specialist advice to shipowners, charterers, P&I Clubs, trading houses, marine insurers and brokers, and freight forwarders. The depth of experience in our team means that we can advise on the majority of marine or trade related concerns, from a straightforward soft commodity arbitration to a multi-party international litigation arising out of breaches of financial instruments secured to shipbuilding contracts.

read more › The nature of our legal practice means we look for ambitious, international lawyers who are able to think 'outside the box' to find solutions for their clients. If you think you meet our basic criteria please do write to us at info@zaiwalla.co.uk attaching your CV. We will reply to you to let you know what opportunities are available. We do take interns for one/two week placements at our London office. Preference is given to applicants who have completed their law degree and are studying the LPC.

read more › We draw on our multi-cultural legal team to provide English law services to a wide range of international clients. Zaiwalla & Co has always had a pioneering approach to both the law and its client base. In the 1980s, the firm acted for the Indian Government in all of its shipping matters (many arising out of aid provision for India's food shortage at the time). In the 1990s we were the first English law firm, along with Clifford Chance, to enter China, and consequently acted in the Chinese Government's first London arbitrations.

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