International Arbitration

Commercial • Investment

Elliot E. Polebaum

Elliot E. Polebaum is an independent arbitrator. He has been appointed presiding arbitrator, sole arbitrator, or co-arbitrator in nearly 100 international arbitrations in both administered and ad hoc cases. He has been recognized in Band 1 of Chambers Global Rankings in the category of International Arbitration: Arbitrators USA where he is described as "a distinguished international arbitration practitioner with notable experience as both arbitrator and advocate in a wide range of arbitral proceedings" (2017) and one who "enjoys an outstanding reputation for his credentials as arbitrator with deep experience in disputes heard under all major institutional rules and in ad hoc proceedings" (2018) and "enormous respect in the arbitration community" (2019 and 2020). In 2021, he was described as “one of the best arbitrators.” In Chambers' 2022 global rankings in the category of International Arbitration: Most in Demand Arbitrators in Global Market Leaders Rankings, Mr. Polebaum was described as “one of the best arbitrators” who is “utterly fair and very clever” and asks “perfect questions” of counsel. Mr. Polebaum was Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center where he taught international arbitration from the 2004-2005 academic year through 2018 and is the author of the treatise "International Arbitration: Commercial and Investment Treaty Law and Practice" (ALM/Law Journal Press 2015, 2016 and 2017 Updates).

While a partner at Fried Frank from 1989 through 2016, Mr. Polebaum established the Firm’s worldwide international arbitration practice and headed it for more than twenty-five years while dividing his time between the Washington and Paris offices of the Firm. He appeared as counsel before arbitral tribunals throughout the world in more than 140 international cases.

Mr. Polebaum was a member of the Board of Directors of the New York International Arbitration Center (2012-2017), was co-chair of the International Committee of the College of Commercial Arbitrators (2013-2019) and is a member of the Board of Directors of the CCA. He is also a member of the panels of arbitrators of the International Centre for Dispute Resolution, the London Court of International Arbitration, the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre, the Japan Commercial Arbitration Association, and the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, among others. He is also a member of the Arbitration Committee of the U.S. National Committee of the International Chamber of Commerce and the ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR.

Before joining Fried Frank, Mr. Polebaum served as law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice William J. Brennan Jr. and United States Circuit Judge James L. Oakes.

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