October 10, 2019
McGuireWoods Houston partner Richard Deutsch, who leads the U.S. division of the firm’s international arbitration group, and associate Sarah Holub published a Law360 article titled “6th Circuit Ruling May Weaken Key Benefit of International Arbitration.” The Oct. 4 article detailed implications of a recent decision by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that expands the breadth of discovery a U.S. court can order in foreign international arbitrations.
In the article, the lawyers explained that the 6th Circuit’s decision to break from prior courts’ interpretations of the word “tribunal” may bring an “influx of litigants embroiled in foreign commercial arbitrations seeking intervention through the vehicle of Section 1782” of the U.S. Code.
The authors cautioned that “limited discovery and infrequent court interference in the discovery process have been enduring characteristics of international arbitration and are often cited as reasons supporting its efficiency over traditional litigation for international disputes.”
The 6th Circuit’s decision “has already triggered much commentary in legal publications and will continue to do so as its effect emerges in subsequent decisions in the other circuits or finalized by the Supreme Court,” they added.