Frederick Acomb

Yvette Borrius

Litigation Committee

The Litigation Committee focuses on the legal, practical and procedural issues involved in conducting litigation. The issues arising in international litigation receive particular attention, including issues such as jurisdiction, choice of law, and the role of international judicial assistance in dispute resolution. Find out more via the tabs below.

About the Committee

The Litigation Committee focuses on the legal, practical and procedural issues involved in conducting litigation. Differences and developments in individual jurisdictions are compared. The issues arising in international litigation receive particular attention, including issues such as jurisdiction, choice of law, and the role of international judicial assistance in dispute resolution. Practitioners involved in larger scale or international litigation can debate topical issues and share their experiences of handling and solving the problems arising from such disputes. In particular, the committee seeks to explore the differences of approach between the common law and civil law traditions, and to encourage a dialogue between practitioners from these two systems.

Close links are maintained with various organisations such as the American Bar Association Litigation Section, the British Institute of International and Comparative Law and the Australian Corporate Lawyers Association.

The committee meets annually at the main IBA Conference and also has a specialist litigation conference generally held in May or June each year, together with regular seminars and events organised by the committee’s local country chairs. The Annual IBA Conference also provides an occasion for the Young Litigators Forum to offer a forum for young lawyers to present papers and exchange ideas.

Committee members receive regular copies of the committee’s newsletter which provides details of the committee’s current activities plus recent developments in the law worldwide. Members also receive the biannual journal of the IBA's Dispute Resolution Section, Dispute Resolution International. Full details of the committee’s Executive Committee and its regional and country chairs are published in the newsletter, and are available on this website. The committee welcomes applications for membership from all lawyers with an interest in litigation.

Forthcoming conferences and webinars View All Conferences

Projects and reports

Report: Impact of Covid-19 on court operations & litigation practice (June 2020)

In light of the magnitude of Covid-19, the IBA’s Litigation Committee has prepared a special report that addresses the impact of the pandemic on the operation of courts and litigation practice in 37 jurisdictions around the world. Download report

Report to the HCCH Special Commission on the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments:

The Hague Conference on Private International Law set up a Special Commission to prepare a draft convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in civil and commercial matters. The Special Commission published a draft convention in 2016 and finalised it in 2017.

The attached report (and annex) has been compiled by members of the IBA Litigation committee named in the report and focuses on specific issues and concerns in regard to the draft convention.

Message from the Litigation Committee Co-Chairs, August 2021

Message from the Litigation Committee Co-Chairs, Yvette Borrius and Tim Strong, for August 2021

Released on Aug 04, 2021

Reports on Litigation Committee sessions from the Virtually Together Conference 2020

This was an insightful session covering international litigation case management, chaired by Peter Bert (Taylor Wessing, Germany). The purpose of the session was to consider best practice for managing transnational disputes across different jurisdictions, looking at how differing procedural rules, timetables, and cultures can best be navigated by in-house and external counsel, and clients, successfully.

Released on Aug 04, 2021

Diversity Series: views on how the pandemic has affected inclusivity in the legal profession

The pandemic and lockdown have changed work organisation habits and routines in many ways. Many people have had to set up an office at home. The line between personal and professional space became blurred almost overnight, not by choice but by necessity. For lawyers, and this seems valid for most of the legal profession, the logistical aspects have not been the most problematic. The legal profession can indeed – for the most part – be carried out remotely, provided a good IT system is in place and one has the necessary furniture at home. Our work nevertheless requires a calm environment during long moments of concentration, reflection or during conference calls with colleagues or clients, sometimes at incongruous hours due to cases involving international contacts.

Released on Aug 04, 2021

Evidence gathering in aid of foreign proceedings in the US and England

More than 50 years ago, a treaty known as the Hague Evidence Convention was negotiated under the auspices of the Hague Conference on Private International Law to facilitate cross-border cooperation in the taking of evidence in civil and commercial matters. Yet, even among the more than 60 countries that have ratified the Convention, the rules and practices for obtaining evidence vary widely. The differences between civil and common law jurisdictions are often especially pronounced. The types of evidence that may be obtained, and the procedures for doing so, differ significantly between the United States and England. This article aims to provide a practical overview of what litigants can expect in the US and England when seeking evidence for use abroad.

Released on Aug 04, 2021

Dispute Resolution International journal

Dispute Resolution International (DRI) is the journal of the IBA's Dispute Resolution Section, which includes the Arbitration Committee among other related committees. It provides in-depth discussion of current developments and topical issues in all areas of dispute resolution, including litigation, arbitration, mediation and other areas of alternative dispute resolution, as well as negligence and damages.

The latest issue of DRI is now available to access online for all members of the IBA Dispute Resolution Section.

Related links

EFFORTS – Towards more EFfective enFORcemenT of claimS in civil and commercial matters within the EU

The IBA Litigation Committee has joined the Stakeholders Cross-Border Committee of the EFFORTS Project, a consortium comprising the University of Milan (coord.), the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for Procedural Law and the Universities of Heidelberg, Brussels VUB, Vilnius and Zagreb, with financial support from the Civil Justice Programme of the European Union.

Embracing a practice driven approach, a group of renowned experts in international procedural law analyses the legislation and case-law of seven EU Member States (namely Belgium, Croatia, France, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, and Luxembourg), promotes the exchange of practices among operators, and collects good practices with the purpose of assessing the interaction of the EU Regulations on the recognition and enforcement of judgments with national legislations.

The targeted EU legislative instruments are the Brussels 1a Regulation and the Regulations on the European Enforcement Order, the European Small Claims Procedure, the European Payment Order, and the European Account Preservation Order. The interaction of said EU instruments with national rules signifies a major weakness of the system, making it difficult for practitioners, and even more for consumers and businesses, to be aware of the mere existence and practical functioning of the available procedures and mechanisms.

The consortium will pursue clarity by means of seven Practice Guides on the cross-border recovery of claims in the targeted Member States. It will contribute to the improvement of existing EU and national legislation by drafting policy recommendations for national and EU policymakers. Finally, it will foster clarity and access to information by setting up the EFFORTS Network and a Working Group on the digitalisation of enforcement procedures. The project involves judges, enforcement agents, EU and national policymakers, lawyers, in-house counsel, consumer associations, and academics.

Additional information concerning the EFFORTS Project is available here

Subcommittees and other groups

The Litigation Committee also coordinates the activities of the following subcommittees/working groups.

  • European Community Jurisdiction & Judgments Subcommittee
  • Hague Conference on Private International Law Subcommittee
  • International Litigation Conventions and Laws Subcommittee
  • Young Litigators Forum

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