Managing Disputes in the Oil and Gas Industry

This 3-day In-house programme from Falconbury has been designed to take an in-depth look at disputes that arise in oil and gas contracts and how they can be managed and resolved in the most cost-effective and efficient manner. The programme is designed to be highly practical and includes hands-on workshop sessions and a mock dispute demonstration.

Course Overview

This new 3-day In-house seminar from Falconbury has been designed to take an in-depth look at disputes that arise in oil and gas contracts and how they can be managed and resolved in the most cost-effective and efficient manner. The programme is designed to be highly practical and includes hands-on workshop sessions and a mock dispute demonstration.

What are the objectives of this programme?

  • Learn how to identify the most effective dispute avoidance techniques through negotiation and other contractual techniques*
  • Find out about typical upstream, midstream and downstream contracts and the types of disputes that arise in them
  • Hear more about how to select the appropriate method of dispute resolution
  • Get-to-grips with dealing with international investment law claims
  • Understand more about your case and preparing for the commencement of a dispute
  • Become familiar with effective drafting of arbitration notices and replies
  • Hear about what you should expect when leading up to an arbitral hearing including early case evaluation
  • Learn about drafting effective instructions for expert witnesses
  • Understand the special features of discovery and discovery disputes
  • Find out how to manage the relationship between in-house counsel and outside counsel in the lead up to and during the arbitration
  • Gain knowledge of how to minimize the pain of the costs and length of arbitration
  • Learn what to expect from the evidentiary hearing and other interim measures
  • Finally, hear about how the arbitration award will be enforced

Who should attend?

  • In-house lawyers
  • Procurement managers
  • Contract managers
  • Commercial negotiators
  • Contract analysts
  • Contract engineers representing international petroleum companies
  • Contractors and subcontractors to the petroleum industry
  • Lawyers in private practice involved in oil and gas law
  • Together with representatives of host governments
CPD Hours
Solicitors Regulation Authority

Your next step is to call us now on +44 (0)20 7729 6677 or email us at or use our contact form and find out how we can help. There are no commitments, and if we cannot help our advice and recommendations are free of charge.

Sample Programme Day 1


  • Oil and gas industry disputes – Background and Introduction*
  • Ownership and rights to natural resources
  • The acting parties
  • Economic interests
Typical disputes in upstream contracts
  • Typical upstream contracts
  • Typical disputes and how to anticipate them
  • ADR/Arbitration/Litigation

Shai Wade, Partner, Reed Smith, London

International investment law claims
  • BITs/MITs
  • How to use the cool-off period
  • Substantive protections

Shai Wade

Preparing for the commencement of a dispute
  • Understanding your case
  • Selecting lawyers
  • Settlement proposals
  • Choosing arbitrators and/or mediator – IBA guidelines on conflicts of interest in international arbitration
  • Notice of arbitration

Paul Dillon, Partner, Reed Smith, London


Drafting an arbitration notice/ reply
  • The basic content requirements
  • Preliminary challenges – e.g. Jurisdiction
  • Evidence gathering
  • Time limits
  • Drafting styles

Paul Dillon


Negotiation skills – Dispute prevention/ early resolution
  • Why negotiate?
  • How negotiation can aid dispute prevention
  • Methods for early resolution
  • Settlement

Sample Programme Day 2


Background and introduction to the midstream oil and gas sector
  • Projects
  • Competing interests
  • Typical midstream contracts

Peter Cassidy, Partner, Reed Smith, London

Typical disputes in midstream projects
  • Typical disputes and how to anticipate them
  • ADR/arbitration/litigation
  • The role of the disputes review board in midstream disputes

Peter Cassidy

Arbitral procedure part I – What to expect leading up to the hearing
  • Preparing for the first meeting
  • Early case evaluation
  • Cost estimates, fee arrangements and budgeting
  • Establishing objectives

Paul Dillon

Arbitral procedure part II – Discovery
  • What is discovery and how to prepare for it?
  • IBA rules on the taking of evidence in international commercial arbitration
  • Redfern schedules

Shai Wade

Using experts – Drafting instructions
  • Instructing experts
  • Expert’s loyalties
  • IBA Rules on the taking of evidence in international arbitration
  • Examining experts in panels or individually?

Gordon Bell, Partner, Reed Smith, London

WORKSHOP Discovery and discovery disputes
  • Drafting requests for discovery
  • Responding to requests for discovery
  • Drafting submissions to the tribunal

Gordon Bell and Shai Wade

The relationship between in-house counsel and outside counsel during an arbitration
  • How to manage the relationship
  • Objectives
  • Roles
  • Costs

Siân Fellows, Partner, Reed Smith, London

Shai Wade

Sample Programme Day 3


Background and introduction to the downstream oil and gas sector
  • Players
  • Typical downstream contracts
  • Trade finance

Kyri Evagora, Partner, Reed Smith, London And Paul Dillon

Typical disputes in downstream contracts
  • Typical disputes
  • ADR/arbitration/litigation
  • Substantive issues that arise

Paul Dillon

Costs and length of arbitration – How to minimize the pain
  • Arbitration clause check list
  • Bifurcated proceedings
  • Pre-arbitral references

Shai Wade

Arbitral procedure part III – Interim measures and evidentiary hearing
  • Pre-award security and conservatory measure
  • Preparation for the hearing including witness preparation
  • What to expect at the hearing

Suzanne Bainbridge, Partner, Reed Smith, London

Mock dispute session

This demonstration will be based on a dispute arising from an upstream contract and illustrating the knock-on effects through mid-stream to down-stream

Lawyers from Reed Smith, London

The arbitration award: What to expect and how to enforce
  • Form
  • Content
  • Clarification/amendment
  • New York Convention enforcement

Lisa Mason, Associate, Reed Smith, London

Recommended Trainers

Expert Presenters

Suzanne Bainbridge is a Partner in the Shipping and Energy, Trade and Commodities group of Reed Smith LLP. She qualified in 1995 and worked for an international shipping firm in London for several years before moving to their Singapore office for three years.

Gordon Bell specialises in international disputes (particularly arbitration) and joined Reed Smith as a Partner in 2010. Gordon has represented a number of international clients in disputes in Europe, Middle East and Asia. Much of Gordon’s work is infrastructure or energy based and Gordon has significant experience of defence and military projects, other contractual claims.

Peter Cassidy is a Partner at Reed Smith LLP. He specialises in engineering and represents international oil and gas and petrochemical contractors on major international projects such as oil and gas platforms, FPSOs, LNG and methane plants and sub-sea development around the world and the decommissioning of a nuclear plant in Lithuania and FGD plants in the UK. Peter represents clients as Counsel throughout the dispute resolution process, whether in court, arbitration or using ADR techniques.

Paul Dillon is a Partner at Reed Smith LLP. He has extensive expertise and experience in the practice areas of litigation, international arbitration, expert determination and mediation. He has spent most of his career working for the downstream side of the energy sector, but his caseload now also includes commodity-based arbitrations.

Kyri Evagora is a Partner at Reed Smith LLP. He specialises in advising companies that trade, finance and transport commodities. His experience covers the related disciplines of trading, sale of goods, trade finance, shipping and insurance. Kyri’s recent experience includes handling complex, multijurisdictional litigation arising out of trade financing, international trading and commodity derivatives transactions. He regularly advises in relation to trade arbitrations and is on hand to support clients in the energy and natural resources industry in relation to their legal problems.

Siân Fellows is a Partner at Reed Smith LLP. She has wide experience of dispute resolution in shipping and international trade including arbitration before trade associations, maritime arbitration and proceedings before the Commercial Court. Recently, Siân spent almost two years in a senior in-house position with Shell International Trading & Shipping Co Ltd (‘STASCO’). Whilst at STASCO, Siân was the legal focal point for the Environmental Products Trading Business, with particular focus on carbon emissions trading and origination including the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, Clean Development Mechanism projects, Joint Implementation projects and other emissions trading schemes.

Lisa Mason is an Associate at Reed Smith LLP and has extensive national and international dispute resolution experience including mediation, arbitration and litigation. In the last few years her practice has focused on international arbitration involving commodities, with particular experience in non-ferrous metals.

Shai Wade is a Partner at Reed Smith LLP. He specialises in international arbitration, investment arbitration and international law. He is an expert in the fields of oil and gas, energy, engineering and joint-venture and corporate disputes. Shai has extensive experience of the major arbitration institutions, including the ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, ICSID and the arbitration rules of various trade associations.

Continuing professional development

This course qualifies for the following CPD programmes:

  • CPD certificate of attendance: 18.50 hours

Bespoke training

We can customise this course to meet the requirements of your organisation. Contact us to discuss your training requirements.

You may also be interested in