School of Law

Paris and Amsterdam dispute London legal supremacy after Brexit

9 May 2019

Senior judges tend to head for Dubai, Doha and Singapore when they retire from the London bench, but a market closer to home is emerging.

Brexit has prompted the launch of English language common law commercial courts in Paris and Amsterdam. But some argue that commercial dispute resolution requires more than shiny courts and a few high-profile judicial appointments. Teams of common law litigation lawyers are unlikely to decamp quickly to Paris and Amsterdam, and forcing them to travel to the Continent will only increase costs in an already expensive process.

Loukas Mistelis, a Greek lawyer and Professor of Transnational Commercial Law and Arbitration at Queen Mary University of London, is harsher in his assessment of the new courts. “It is posturing by the French and Dutch governments,” he says, adding that suggestions that contract dispute resolution will haemorrhage to those courts are “Brexit scaremongering”.

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