Michelle Bradfield has more than 20 years of experience as a lawyer, with a focus on complex international arbitration often involving public international law. She has been recognized in legal directories for more than a decade. The Legal 500 ranks her in the "Hall of Fame" for both international arbitration and public international law and describes her as "among the best in London" and "one of the few PIL practitioners in London who has appeared across almost all PIL areas — she is simply excellent and vastly experienced." Chambers says "The experience with Michelle Bradfield has been outstanding. She has an excellent knowledge of law and she has also got excellent interpersonal skills."
Michelle has significant experience in representing states and private entities on a wide array of matters, including investment treaty arbitration, international commercial arbitration, boundary and maritime disputes, and deep-sea mining and sovereignty issues. She is regularly involved in "bet-the-company" disputes and has worked for numerous FTSE 100 and Fortune 100 companies in disputes around the globe, including in the United States, Australia, India, Sudan, China, Spain, Brazil, Nigeria, and the United Arab Emirates. Additionally, she has worked for many States, including Australia, Malaysia, Croatia, Turkey, Barbados, Oman, China, and sovereign wealth funds.
Michelle lectures at various universities, including King's College London and has published extensively. She also started her international law career as a Fellow at the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law, the University of Cambridge, and was assistant to Sir Elihu Lauterpacht CBE KC.
The following represents experience acquired prior to joining Jones Day.
Investment Treaty Arbitration
Sovereign wealth fund v. Asian state: acted for the claimant in an investment treaty arbitration.
Sudapet Company Ltd v. Republic of South Sudan: acted for the claimant in a US$3 billion International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) arbitration against South Sudan in relation to the expropriation of its interests in various oil blocks in South Sudan. This case was the first investment treaty case to examine an expropriation arising out of the creation of a new state.
Silver Ridge Power B.V. v. The Republic of Italy: acted for the claimant in an ICSID arbitration against Italy that was initiated pursuant to the Energy Charter Treaty and concerned the government's change in policy towards the solar industry.
Philip Morris Asia Ltd v. Commonwealth of Australia: advised the respondent in a United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) arbitration that related to Australia's plain-packaging tobacco legislation.
OI European Group v. Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela: acted for the claimant in an ICSID arbitration against Venezuela, which related to the expropriation of glass manufacturing plants.
Karmer v. Republic of Georgia: acted for the claimant in an ICSID arbitration against Georgia, which related to the construction of a highway and the operation of a hotel and casino.
Dutch company v. Republic of Turkey: acted for the claimant in an ICSID arbitration against Turkey concerning an expropriation of an electricity generation concession agreement.
Adria Beteiligungs v. Republic of Croatia: acted for the respondent in an UNCITRAL arbitration, under the aegis of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, which related to an alleged expropriation of a gaming concession agreement and considered issues of the breakdown of the former Yugoslavia.
Private medical research university: acted for the claimant in a London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) matter related to a groundbreaking investment in Asia. The case was governed by English law and involved issues of breach of contract and misrepresentation.
International investment bank: acted for the claimant in an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) arbitration against Polish developers. Also represented the client in the enforcement proceedings in Poland and advised on several satellite claims commenced by the respondents in the Polish courts.
Azerbaijan developer: acted for the respondent in an ICC arbitration, which related to the construction of a large development in Baku. The dispute was governed by Azerbaijan law and involved allegations of breach of contract.
Aircraft company: acted for the claimant in an LCIA arbitration relating to the leasing of planes. The dispute was governed by English law and involved allegations of breach of contract.
Large Spanish company: acted in an ICC arbitration that related to the construction of a power plant in Russia. The dispute was governed by Russian law.
Multinational oil and gas company: represented one of the world's largest publicly traded international oil and gas companies in an arbitration regarding onshore and offshore pipelines. The value of this dispute was in excess of US$500 million. The arbitration was under UNCITRAL Rules and governed by Nigerian law.
Public International Law
Sultanate of Oman: advised the government on its submission to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf.
Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission: served as assistant to the president of the Commission, which delimited and demarcated the entire boundary between the two States.
Malaysia: acted for Malaysia in its dispute with Singapore over the sovereignty of Pedra Branca/Pulau Batu Puteh, Middle Rocks, and South Ledge, which was heard by the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
A sovereign wealth fund: acted for the fund in negotiations with a State in connection with a proposed multibillion dollar infrastructure project, which involved the State relinquishing sovereignty over its territory.
A State and company: provided advice on the public international law issues between Cyprus and Northern Cyprus.
Government of Barbados: advised the government on its dispute with the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, which related to the delimitation of Exclusive Economic Zones and Continental Shelves of both States. Advised the government on its Outer Continental Shelf entitlement and prepared its submission to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf.
Chile's Proposed Constitutional Changes to Natural Resources Rights Could Have Devastating Effects on Foreign Investors: How Can International Law Protect Them?
Companies With Investments and Businesses in Ukraine and Russia: The Importance of Investment Treaties
"One of the most committed, insightful and dedicated lawyers I have had the privilege of working with."The Legal 500
- University of Cambridge (LL.M. 2004; British Chevening-Cambridge Australia Trust Scholarship); Queensland University of Technology (LL.B. 2001; Tom Cain Trophy for Outstanding Achievement; President, Law Society; Sole student representative on the Law Faculty Governing Board; B.Bus. 2001; Dean's List for Highest Achievers; Scholarship to Shanghai Jiao Tong University, International Masters of Business 2000)
- Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales and Queensland, Australia (solicitor)
Global Arbitration Review: "one of the best lawyers I've ever used in my career — both in terms of technical legal expertise and her extremely diligent and client friendly approach"
Legal 500: "a next-level partner, who has run some enormous arbitrations and gives them unparalleled energy and analysis" (2022) and "technically outstanding lawyer with keen commercial skills;" "I would choose her for any future international arbitrations in a heartbeat" (2021)