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With more than 30 years of cross-border experience, Stephen Pearson's practice focuses on complex international litigation and arbitration. Stephen is dual qualified (England & Wales and New York) and actively practices in the courts of both jurisdictions, as well as in other U.S. courts and arbitral tribunals around the world.

Stephen has represented clients in multibillion dollar disputes in the United Kingdom, the United States, and elsewhere. After the landmark decision in the Excalibur/Texas Keystone case, where all claims were dismissed and indemnity costs awarded against the litigation funders that backed those claims, Stephen's team won a clean sweep of the major UK legal awards (dispute resolution team of the year at the British Legal Awards, the Legal Business Awards, and The Lawyer Awards). His team was also shortlisted for European Dispute Resolution team of the year in 2023 by The Lawyer for helping bondholders secure a €804 million judgment against The Netherlands in the SNS expropriation case following a 10-year fight for compensation.

Among many high-profile cases, Stephen acted for a wide stable of banks in the disputes that followed the financial crisis, including RBS, Standard Chartered, Wells Fargo, and Lehman Brothers. He has also appeared as counsel in numerous cross-border bankruptcy cases, including Soundview and Oi as well as in high-profile cross-border litigation disputes, such as the Grenfell Tower-related litigation brought in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (dismissed and sent to the United Kingdom on forum grounds).


  • Texas Keystone prevails against claim brought by Excalibur VenturesJones Day successfully defended Texas Keystone Inc., a U.S. oil and gas company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, against Excalibur Ventures' $1.6 billion claim for an interest in various petroleum fields in Iraqi Kurdistan.
  • Expropriated SNS Reaal bondholders secure compensation from Dutch StateJones Day successfully assisted SNS Reaal bondholders in obtaining a judgment securing €804 million in compensation from the Dutch State for the nationalization of SNS Reaal NV and SNS Bank NV on February 1, 2013.
  • Grenfell Tower U.S. Group action dismissed to UKJones Day obtained a complete dismissal of product liability claims, later affirmed on appeal, brought by nearly 250 plaintiffs against a major manufacturer arising out of the Grenfell Tower fire in London.
  • Mahindra Satyam resolves global investor claimsJones Day resolved world-wide claims brought against Mahindra Satyam by former investors in connection with the alleged admission of Satyam's former Chairman that he deliberately misstated the Company's accounts for several years.
  • Financial Guaranty Insurance Company brings fraud claims against IKB in connection with US$1.875 billion liquidity support transactionJones Day represented Financial Guaranty Insurance Company and its U.K. subsidiary ("FGIC") in an action in New York State Supreme Court against IKB and its affiliates (the "Havenrock Action").
  • Lehman Brothers resolves action involving foreign exchange transactionsJones Day represented Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Lehman Brothers Commercial Corporation in connection with the settlement of all claims relating to foreign exchange transactions between Lehman Brothers, on the one hand, and Aberdeen Asset Managers Ltd and over sixty Aberdeen affiliated and non-affiliated managed funds (collectively “Aberdeen”), on the other.
  • Major Russian consumer lending bank in ICC proceedings in Geneva relating to failed joint ventureJones Day advised a major Russian consumer lending bank in connection with ICC proceedings in Geneva relating to a failed joint venture with a French insurer. The dispute, with over $100 million at stake, also involved related proceedings in the Moscow Arbitrazh Court.
  • Russian Standard Vodka successfully defends against claims in U.S. NAD proceedingJones Day defended the manufacturer of IMPERIA, Russia's No. 1 premium vodka, in a U.S. NAD advertising proceeding that upheld the client's entitlement to make public statements concerning the origin and authenticity of competing STOLICHNAYA vodka.
  • Diamond broker resists claim for share of commissionJones Day advised the world's largest diamond broker in its successful resolution of a claim by a fellow broker for commission said to be owed in respect of clients who defected from one broker to the other.
  • Miscellaneous Other Representations

    Advised various investment banks, hedge funds, and government entities in connection with disputes centered around distressed corporate and sovereign debt. Acted in commercial litigation involving the Democratic Republic of Congo, the People's Republic of Congo, Liberia, Nicaragua, Brazil, Argentina, Cameroon, Zambia, and Indonesia. As a result of this experience, Stephen was asked to contribute a chapter on "Sovereign Immunity under English Law" to a leading textbook on cross-border litigation (Trans-Atlantic Commercial Litigation & Arbitration, published by Oceana).

    Conducted a number of high-profile pro bono matters for sovereign states, including advice given to Uganda, Nepal, and Kenya on important constitutional issues.

    Advised West LB AG in connection with a dispute concerning repo trades concluded around the time of the devaluation of the Turkish Lira.

    Acted for Magnet Plc in GE Capital v. Bankers Trust and Others, litigation stemming from what was the then largest leveraged buyout (LBO) in UK corporate history.

    Acted for a number of major insurers, Lloyd's syndicates, and managing agencies on financial sector insurance claims, in particular directors and officers (D&O), errors and omissions (E&O), Better Business Bureau (BBB), trade credit, and political risk.

    Acted for a number of Lloyd's Members' Agents in court proceedings (including group actions connected with alleged mis-selling) and in arbitrations under the Lloyd's arbitration rules.

    Advised individuals on a number of major D&O claims, including the Queen's Moat Houses litigation, the Royal Automobile Club (RAC) litigation, and a claim against two directors of an advertising company that became the longest civil fraud trial heard at the Old Bailey. Also advised the client, in conjunction with French lawyers, on the first contested avoidance of a D&O policy in France.

    Advised leading property agents on disputes stemming from the $1 billion+ transfer of all Inland Revenue and Customs & Excise properties to the private sector (Strategic Transfer of Estate to the Private Sector [STEPS]).

    Acted for a British Virgin Island (BVI)-registered energy company against a Turkish gas company in International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) proceedings in Geneva focusing on a failed joint venture in Ukraine.

    Acted for a Russian commodities company against a Ukrainian company in a London Metal Exchange (LME) arbitration in London regarding failed manganese trades.

    Advised diamond brokers on the Diamond Trading Company's (DTC) restructuring of the rough diamond market (Supplier of Choice) and a variety of major diamond companies on ad hoc industry issues.

    • May 20, 2014
      2014 Speaker Series: Energy and Construction Law Update
    • October 2008
      Minimizing Litigation Risk - ABS East Conference
    • June 2008
      Litigation Risk: Latest Developments in US and UK CDO Litigation
    • March 11–14, 2008
      American and English Perspectives on CDO litigation