DISPUTE RESOLUTION

Dispute resolution has been a key area of our practice for more than 40 years. At any given time, we run a multitude of diverse, atypical cases, each of substantial size and considerable complexity and work hard to keep our success rate at a very high level.

We excel in commercial arbitration, civil litigation (mainly corporate, commercial and financial) administrative litigation (mainly tax, customs and regulatory) and white-collar criminal litigation, and cover all aspects touching upon an operating business, its stakeholders, managers and personnel.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

(Mediation, Arbitration, Expert determination, Adjudication)

Over the years, national courts Europe-wide, have been clogged by the multitude of disputes. Proceedings have been dramatically slowing down over time and the quality of justice has been deteriorating. In many jurisdictions (Greece included) litigants must wait many years for their cases to be finally adjudicated, often to find that the much sought judicial relief is completely ineffective, because it came too late and/or with questionable quality. Accessibility to the public justice system in terms of low judicial cost is often largely compromised by long, slow and cumbersome proceedings - even worst - by late and ineffective remedies. More effective jurisdictions in terms of speed and quality imply more expensive justice, which in many cases is still more costly and more time consuming than ADR.

The above are the main drivers for one to seek ADR. Business oriented litigant parties, expect a predictable cost and a reasonably short time for the final resolution of their disputes. Although one cannot say that both or any of the above targets are always achieved by ADR (examples of paradox awards and/or slow and/or expensive proceedings not being rare), ADR is becoming more popular and easier to access.

Mediation

Following the “Mediation Directive” (i.e. 2008/52), Greece adopted L. 3898/2010 regulating the mediation in commercial and civil disputes. Very recent changes in Greek Civil Procedure Law further promote the use of mediation and introduce judicial mediation as an alternative to litigation.

Mediation encourages parties to settle their differences through discussion, with a view to finding a mutually acceptable agreement. It is a recommended option when, for a number of reasons, people are unable to negotiate effectively for themselves or have reached some sort of deadlock, or to prevent the worsening of unpleasant situations. Mediation is a recognition that either of the traditional judicial route or arbitration, are likely to be time consuming, and costly, and it is therefore of advantage to both sides to discuss, settling their differences sooner rather than later.

Because of the nascent stage of mediation in Greece, recourse to this option is limited, however there is great potential for the future.

We fully support mediation wherever appropriate; members of our firm are trained and certified mediation counsel.

Arbitration

We run a very strong and renown arbitration practice since the mid 80’s. Members of our firm have sat in arbitration panels and/or are very experienced arbitration counsel or have appeared as expert witnesses in relation to Greek law issues.

Our practice is dedicated to commercial, corporate, financial, investment, M&A and technical disputes and covers national, ad hoc and international arbitration (ICC, LCIA, Athens Chamber of Commerce, Tokyo Chamber of Commerce a.o. fora), mostly in cases where either the applicable law or the venue or a party or assets relate to Greece. Our arbitration team has the advantage of being highly specialized in heavily regulated business sectors, also being multilingual, with a very good understanding of the continental legal system, EU legislation and applicable international treaties.

We have very successfully handled a broad range of disputes in several sectors, including banking, competition, corporate, contract, energy, engineering, financing, distribution, IP rights, media, M&A, motor vehicles, public procurement, telecommunications, a.o.

We often team up and have significant experience in working with large international law firms and/or preeminent local law firms, in cases involving alien applicable laws or venues.

Litigation

Our core practice covers all aspects of litigation, including providing counselling to clients on business and litigation matters and proceedings and representing them before all Greek courts, civil, criminal[1] and administrative.

We are absolutely committed to the defence of the best interests and to the protection of our clients, acting with the utmost discretion. Our dispute resolution expertise spans over all our practice areas and covers all entrepreneurial activities, taxation administrative issues, independent authorities and other sector specific proceedings.

We have particular expertise in disputes relating to (alphabetically): agency and distribution, commercial, company law, competition, contract, consumer protection, employment law, intellectual and industrial property, M&A and product liability. Οur practice covers all sector specific independent authorities, committees, tribunals, panels and other fora[2].


[1] White collar only; (e.g. fraud, (accounting, banking, securities, tax, customs, computer and consumer fraud), Embezzlement, Smuggling, Price-Fixing, Bid-Rigging, Illegal Trading Practices, Profiteering, Usury, Corruption and Bribery, embezzlement); Financial, tax and money laundering crimes.

[2] e.g. Competition Committee, Disciplinary Bodies, National Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT), Greek National Council for Radio and Television (ESR), Personal Data Protection Authority, RAE, Trademarks Committee, a.o.

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