Julie Bédard

Julie Bédard

Partner, International Litigation and Arbitration; Latin America
Julie Bédard is head of Skadden’s International Litigation and Arbitration Group for the Americas. Fluent in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese, Ms. Bédard practices in four languages in complex disputes and investigations. She is a prior member of Skadden’s Policy Committee, the firm’s governing body.

Bio

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Trained in both civil and common law, Ms. Bédard has a doctorate in conflicts of antitrust and securities regulation and represents clients in litigation, arbitration and regulatory proceedings throughout the world, advising on disputes, regulatory enforcement, governing law, jurisdiction, arbitration agreements, force majeure and changed circumstances, as well as extraterritoriality and international judgment enforcement.

She represents clients in federal and state courts in the United States and has served as counsel in international arbitration proceedings held under the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the American Arbitration Association (AAA), the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). She regularly advises clients on dispute resolution and the protection of global investments under international treaties.

Ms. Bédard frequently counsels management and supervisory boards in corporate governance, antitrust and other regulatory matters, internal investigations, as well as corruption and compliance matters. Together with members of the securities litigation practice, she regularly assists Latin American companies in U.S. securities class actions.

In 2020, Ms. Bédard was named as an arbitrator for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement’s dispute settlement mechanism. She also is a member of the ICC International Court of Arbitration, the Shanghai Arbitration Commission and the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board International’s Panel of International Arbitrators. Additionally, Ms. Bédard is the immediate past co-chair of the Arbitration Committee of the International Bar Association and is a member of its task force on “Addressing Issues of Corruption in International Arbitration.”

Ms. Bédard has been recognized and repeatedly listed in:

  • Chambers USA - Recognized in Band 1 (“Extremely sharp, very commercial and comes up with solutions,” 2022 edition; “She’s a standout lawyer” with “great skills in dealing with clients” and “a complete lawyer who deals very well with court litigation, arbitration and investigations,” 2021 edition; “Exceptional” and “very thoughtful in giving her advice ... [she] takes time to really get to know a file,” 2020 edition; and an “extremely talented lawyer,” 2019 edition);
  • Chambers Latin America (“She is one of the best lawyers I have ever worked with and has an outstanding expertise and ability to evaluate all aspects of the case;” and “the most strategic legal mind I have ever come across,” 2022 edition; “She is a great team leader, does commercial and investor-state cases and is a very impressive practitioner,” 2021 edition; “one of the most impressive external lawyers we’ve come across,” who “has profound technical knowledge of arbitration, [and is] also very insightful and strategic. She commands respect and stature among the community. She really is the whole package and it makes you feel extraordinarily confident with her representing you,” 2020 edition);
  • Latinvex as one of Latin America’s Top 100 Lawyers for Arbitration and Litigation (2017- 21) and one of Latin America’s Top Female Lawyers (2015-21);
  • Chambers Global (“A complete lawyer who deals very well with court litigation, arbitration and investigations. She also has great skills in dealing with clients,” 2022 edition; “She tackles these big international cases while bringing a local flavour that really pleases the clients,” 2021 edition);
  • Financier Worldwide 2022 Power Player: International Arbitration – Distinguished Adviser;
  • Global Arbitration Review’s International Who’s Who of Commercial Arbitration and The Best Lawyers in America;
  • Euromoney’s Expert Guides: Best of the Best Global 2019 and Women in Business Law 2019 Expert Guide as well its Best of the Best USA 2021, 2017 and 2013 Expert Guides for Commercial Arbitration (Top 30 Practitioners);
  • Global Arbitration Review’s Who’s Who Legal: Thought Leaders – Arbitration (2019-22);
  • Benchmark Litigation’s Top 250 Women in Litigation (2019-21);
  • as a leading lawyer by The Legal 500 U.S. in 2019; and
  • Lawdragon’s inaugural Global Litigation 500 list in 2021.

Ms. Bédard also received the Best in Commercial Arbitration Euro-money Women in Business Law Award in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2020. In addition, Ms. Bédard was selected by Harvard Law School as an honoree for its second annual International Women’s Day Exhibi­tion in 2015. She was named by the World Economic Forum to the 2013 Young Global Leaders and was selected among the Inspiring Women in Law by Latin Lawyer (November 2013).

Past and current representative clients include Air France/KLM; AEI; Argos USA; Banco Bradesco BBI S.A.; Banco BTG; Banco do Brasil Securities LLC; Banco Itau; Banco Votorantim S.A.; BB Securities Ltd.; BRF S.A.; Capgemini S.A.; Cinepolis; Citigroup; CEMEX, SAB de CV; CF Industries, Inc.; The Clorox Company; Deutsche Bank AG; Embraer S.A.; Empresas Polar S.A.; Encana Corporation; Enka Insaat ve Sanayi A.S.; Exxon Mobil Corporation; First Solar, Inc.; Gerdau S.A.; Google LLC; Grupo Proeza; HSBC Securities (USA), Inc.; Inversiones Cordillera S.A.; Itaú BBA USA Securities, Inc.; Liberty Mutual Insurance Corporation; Mubadala Investment Company PJSC; Netshoes (Cayman) Limited; Materis SAS; MetLife, Inc.; NextEra Energy, Inc.; NSP Maritime Link Inc.; Ovintiv Inc.; Pattern Energy Group LP; Philip Morris International Inc.; The Travelers Companies, Inc.; Ultrapar Participaçoes S.A.; Vale S.A.; Votorantim Participações S.A.; Walmart Inc.; and The WhiteWave Foods Company.

In cases, she represented or is representing:

  • a technology company in antitrust and other regulatory matters in South Korea, India and Japan;
  • an energy company in a dispute against a Latin American government;
  • a communications provider in U.S. and Brazilian regulatory matters;
  • an energy company in a dispute involving a project in Thailand;
  • an energy company in a contract dispute with a local partner, state-owned entities and regulatory agencies;
  • a pharmaceutical company in a dispute concerning a patent;
  • a special committee of a Delaware company investigating accounting issues involving Mexican operations;
  • an oil company in a potential dispute with a sovereign concerning a concession; 
  • a Brazilian aircraft manufacturer in a dispute against a U.S. aircraft manufacturer involving the termination of a multibillion-dollar merger agreement and the termination of a large joint venture agreement;
  • a Turkish construction company in a French-language, Swiss law-governed dispute with a sovereign;
  • a French company in a dispute concerning a Brazilian investment;
  • a French company in a potential dispute involving a complex joint venture agreement;
  • a Canadian subsidiary of a French company in an ICDR arbitration against a U.S. company concerning a supply agreement;
  • a U.S. company in an ICC arbitration involving a post-acquisition dispute with a French company subject to an ICC arbitration in London;
  • a European bank in a post-acquisition dispute involving Mexico;
  • a Brazilian internet company in a U.S. securities class action;
  • a Brazilian food company in a U.S. securities class action;
  • a U.S. energy company in investments in Argentina, Brazil, Guyana and Mexico;
  • a Canadian energy services company in connection with several construction disputes;
  • a Canadian energy company in a dispute concerning a Latin American investment;
  • The Republic of Argentina in New York litigation involving the expropriation of YPF S.A.;
  • an Irish company in a dispute with an airline manufacturer governed by Swiss law;
  • an Asian agriculture company in a dispute concerning a Latin American investment;
  • a Brazilian company in various potential litigation and arbitration aspects of a regulatory investigation;
  • Brazilian individuals in a post-acquisition dispute with a U.S. company;
  • a Brazilian aerospace company in a federal shareholder class action involving claims of alleged violations of federal securities law;
  • a syndicate of underwriters in Re Petrobras Securities litigation before the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of New York; 
  • a Brazilian company in a dispute concerning a mining project in Brazil;
  • a Brazilian company in an internal investigation and a related U.S. litigation;
  • a Brazilian subsidiary of a U.S. company in an internal investigation under the U.S. FCPA;
  • a multinational oil drilling and services company in various disputes spanning three continents and coordinating a cohesive litigation/arbitration strategy;
  • a Chilean company in an internal investigation;
  • a Hong Kong-based shipping company in an ICDR arbitration and in obtaining a preliminary injunction in aid of arbitration;
  • a U.S. company and its Peruvian affiliate, advising on the termination of an engineering and procurement contract;
  • a U.S. company in an investigation of post-acquisition indemnification claims subject to an ICC arbitration in New York;
  • a Swiss company in the termination of a distribution agreement subject to an ICC arbitration in Paris and involving Egyptian and Swiss law;
  • a multinational oil company, advising on investment protections, in various international investments;
  • Brazilian companies, giving advice on dispute resolution mechanisms in nondisclosure agreements and share purchase agreements;
  • Brazilian, Uruguayan and U.S. companies in an ICC arbitration venued in Miami, and various litigation suits in Brazil arising from joint venture disputes;
  • a Brazilian company and its U.S. subsidiary in a Florida state court litigation in connection with a dispute involving 12 Latin American defendants;
  • Chilean companies in a post-acquisition dispute arbitrated under ICC rules in New York;
  • a Barbadian entity in connection with the 2010 expropriation of a group of fertilizer companies based in Venezuela in which the Barbadian entity held a 10% ownership stake;
  • a U.S. company, providing arbitration advice in connection with the potential acquisition of a Brazilian company;
  • a Brazilian company, advising on potential litigation against a U.S. company to attach assets and enforce a judgment against its Brazilian subsidiary;
  • a Brazilian company, advising on a prospective ICDR arbitration against a Brazilian company arising out of a share purchase agreement;
  • a U.S. company in an ICDR arbitration against a Cyprus company concerning licensing of products in the People’s Republic of China, litigation proceedings to vacate a partial award in the U.S. and related litigation in Hong Kong;
  • a limited partner in a Delaware partnership in an ICDR arbitration venued in New York, including defending against a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction sought by the respondent general partner to prevent his removal;
  • a Delaware investor in a Mauritius real estate fund in connection with the removal of the fund management company;
  • a U.S. company seeking to protect a large investment in Venezuela against expropriation;
  • Spanish and Netherlands companies faced with the nationalization of their Venezuelan subsidiary;
  • a U.S. company seeking to prevent an asset seizure under federal maritime law;
  • a Mexican company’s subsidiary experiencing discriminatory and unfair treatment in Colombia;
  • a former chief executive officer in a securities class action involving a restatement of financial statements;
  • a Brazilian company seeking injunctive relief in aid of an ICC arbitration venued in New York;
  • a Korean company against the enforcement in Korea of a Singapore award in favor of a German company;
  • a Swiss company and its Asian subsidiary seeking to hire employees in compliance with applicable noncompete covenants;
  • a U.S. pharmaceutical company in an international arbitration against a Canadian manufacturer;
  • a Canadian company in connection with prospective indemnification litigation against a U.S. company in New York;
  • a Swiss company in a Barbados litigation against a Barbados company involving a dispute arising under a swap agreement;
  • a Luxembourg company facing a hostile takeover by an Indian company;
  • a Singapore company in an ICC arbitration involving a shareholders’ dispute venued in London against the Cayman subsidiary of a Hong Kong private equity investor;
  • a Brazilian company in an ICC arbitration arising out of a shareholders dispute with a Venezuelan company;
  • a U.S. company, advising on grounds for vacating an ICC award and opposing enforcement of the award;
  • a Peruvian company, providing arbitration advice in connection with a power plant project in Peru;
  • a U.S. company, advising on the consolidation of arbitrations and the enforcement of arbitral awards;
  • a U.S. company, advising on a prospective ICC arbitration to resolve a shareholders dispute with a Brazilian company;
  • a Singapore investor, in proceedings against a Southeast Asian government involving claims under the ICSID Convention, the ASEAN Investment Agreement and public international law;
  • a Chilean company in an arbitration under the AAA International Arbitration Rules against a Thai company concerning sale of goods; and
  • an Argentine company in an ICC arbitration arising out of an acquisition dispute with a Brazilian company.

Ms. Bédard also regularly acts as arbitrator in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese language cases. Among other cases, she was named a party-appointed arbitrator in an ICSID investment treaty arbitration involving a Kuwaiti telecommunications company and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in addition to serving as sole arbitrator in an ICC arbitration concerning a distribution agreement involving a U.S. company and a Peruvian company, as well as in another ICC arbitration involving a manufacturing contract dispute between a U.S. company and a Chinese company. She also was appointed in LCIA arbitrations and as a sole arbitrator in an UNCITRAL arbitration involving development agreements between a U.S. company and a Spanish company. She chaired an ICC arbitration governed by Romanian law and venued in Bucharest.

Prior to joining Skadden, she practiced as a litigator in Québec, Canada (1996-1998), served as law clerk on the Supreme Court of Canada (1998-1999) and taught LL.M. students at Columbia University (1999-2001). In 2001, she worked at the Court of Justice of the European Communities and at the Secretariat of the Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce.

Recent Lectures

  • Institute for Transnational Arbitration, “Expert Panel on Arbitrator Conflicts and Disclosures,” (June 2022);
  • French Arbitration Association, “The Impact of Ethical Obligations on International Arbitration Procedures,” (June 2022);
  • International Bar Association Conference, “Mergers and Acquisitions in Latin America in a Challenging World,” (May 2022);
  • NYIAC Conference, “Corruption Issues in International Arbitration and Post-Arbitration Litigation: Views from Different Continents,” (April 2022);
  • Columbia Arbitration Day 2022, “Investment Treaties and Arbitration: Should We Seek a Different Way to Settle Disputes Between States and Investors?” (March 2022);
  • 19th ICC Miami Conference, “Mind the Gap: The Power of Arbitrators to Review Contracts,” (December 2021);
  • Columbia International Arbitration Association, “International Arbitration in the U.S.: Procedure and Practice,” (December 2021);
  • Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce, “Topics Related to Arbitration Seated in, or Related to, Brazil,” (November 2021);
  • 2021 ICC Canada International Arbitration AGM, (September 2021);
  • Paris Arbitration Week Panel, “Lusophones’ Arbitration Meeting – The Principle of Iura Novit Curia (Iura Novit Arbiter) in International Arbitration,” (September 2021);
  • Law School of the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Program, “Lawyers Studies in Current Times,” (September 2021);
  • Bucharest Arbitration Days Webinar, “Arbitrability – Whereto?” (June 2021);
  • Juris Conference’s Fifteenth Annual Investment Treaty Arbitration: A Debate & Discussion: “Focus on Substance v. Dispute Resolution Forum: What is the Best Way To Go About the ISDS Reform Process” (May 2021); 
  • Delos Webinar, “Who Decides: Courts or Tribunals. Arbitrability in International Arbitration” (February 2021);
  • XVI Rio de Janeiro International Arbitration (Virtual) Conference, “Technical Issues and the Law in M&A and Corporate Disputes” (November 2020);
  • NYIAC New York Arbitration Week Webinar, “THE CLASH: Contract Terms v Applicable Law” (November 2020);
  • SIAC Webinar, “Energy Arbitration in Latin America” (November 2020);
  • SIAC Webinar, “SIAC Investor-State Dispute Settlement And Alternative Dispute Resolution” (November 2020);
  • Galicia Abogados Webinar, “Las Mejores Estrategias para Lidiar con Cláusulas de Fork-in-the-road y Renuncia en Arbitraje de Inversión” (November 2020);
  • NYIAC Grand Central Forum Roundtable, “The Future of International Arbitration” (October 2020);
  • SIAC Latin America Webinar, “Comparative Perspectives on Investment Arbitration from Latin America and Europe” (July 2020);
  • AMCHAM Webinar “Arbitraje y medidas regulatorias durante COVID-19” (June 2020);
  • Practising Law Institute Webinar, “International Arbitration 2020” (June 2020);
  • ICC YAF Webinar, “Cláusulas MAC e Arbitragem” (June 2020);
  • Centro de Arbitragem e Mediação, “Webinar CAM-CCBC 25.05: How to Prepare Today for the Post-Pandemic Business World? Management of Contracts and New Opportunities” (June 2020);
  • WWA Webinar, “Los Escenarios que Abre el COVID-19: Impacto en la Gestión de los Negocios y Conflictos” (May 2020);
  • COVID-19 Impact on Business and Conflict Management Webinar, Women Way in Arbitration Latam (May 2020);
  • De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek Seminar, “The Hague Court of Appeal’s Yukos Judgment,” New York (March 2020);
  • Dispute Resolution Law Journal Annual Symposium, “ICA 2020: The New Restatement,” Malibu, California (February 2020);
  • 7th Annual GAR Live Paris, “Corruption, Illegality and Compliance in Arbitration: Are We Talking About the Same Animal and Where Do We Stand?” Paris (November 2019);
  • New York International Arbitration Center’s New York Arbitration Week “JAMS Lunch Program - M&A and Complex Financial Disputes in Arbitration,” New York (November 2019);
  • Second World Meeting of the Societies of International Law, “Plenary Round Table De-Humanization of International Law?, Human Beings, a Fundamental Value of International Law,” Amsterdam (September 2019);
  • V Rio de Janeiro Conference on International Arbitration, “Compliance and Due Process: Transparency, Bifurcation, Efficiency, ‘Class Action,’ Third-Party Funding (Duty to Inform),” Rio de Janeiro (May 2019);
  • Skadden’s 23rd Annual Energy & Infrastructure Projects Conference, “ Latest Developments in Investment Treaty Protection,” Washington, D.C. (May 2019);
  • 5th Annual GAR Live BITs, “The GAR Live Debate,” Washington D.C., (May 2019);
  • Columbia Arbitration Day 2019 Program, 10 Years of CAD: New Ideas, New Concerns, “Energy Arbitration in Latin America: Challenges and Trends,” Columbia Law School, New York (March 2019);
  • ITA-IEL-ICC Joint Conference on International Energy Arbitration, “Trendlines in Energy Disputes - What is Next?” Houston, Texas (January 2019);

For a complete list of Ms. Bédard's lectures and publications, click here.

Credentials

Education

  • J.S.D., Columbia University School of Law, 2006
  • LL.M., Columbia University School of Law, 2001
  • LL.B., McGill University Faculty of Law (common law), 1996
  • B.C.L., McGill University Faculty of Law, 1996

Admissions

  • Foreign Consultant admitted by the Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil (Brazilian Bar), São Paulo section, 2015
  • New York, 2002
  • Quebec, 1997
  • U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, 2004

Associations

  • Practitioner Group – UNCITRAL Working Group III 
  • World Economic Forum Young Global Leader (2013)
  • International Bar Association, Arbitration Committee (Co-Chair), Task Force on Counsel Conduct in International Arbitration (Former Chair), Sub-Committee on Conflicts of Interest (Former Member), UNCITRAL Working Group (Former Member)
  • Center for Arbitration and Mediation of the Chamber of Commerce Brazil-Canada, Arbitrator
  • The Institute for Transnational Arbitration, Advisory Board
  • International Bar Association, Litigation Committee
  • Chamber of Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration CIESP/FIESP (Arbitrator)
  • LCIA, North American Users Council (Former U.S. Member)
  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce, ICC Arbitration Committee
  • ICC Task Force on Reducing Time and Costs in Arbitration (Former Member)
  • ICC Task Force on Criminal Law and Arbitration (Former Member)
  • American Society of International Law
  • International Law Association, American Branch
  • CPR International Committee on Arbitration
  • CPR Awards Judge (2009-2011)
  • Canadian Arbitration Congress
  • New York City Bar Association, Committee on Arbitration (2003-2005)
  • Comitê Brasileiro de Arbitragem (Member)
  • Arbitral Women
  • Young Arbitrators Forum, Steering Committee
  • Young Canadian Arbitration Practitioners, Board of Directors

Languages

  • English
  • French
  • Spanish
  • Portuguese
  • Comprehension of Italian and Romanian

Julie Bédard

Partner, International Litigation and Arbitration; Latin America
julie.bedard@skadden.com