Janis H. Brennan

Of Counsel - Washington, D.C.

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Contact Information

202.261.7315

202.467.9615

jhbrennan@foleyhoag.com Download vCard

Janis Brennan brings both international dispute resolution and transactional experience to her extensive international practice. In the area of international disputes, Janis represents sovereign states and their state-owned corporations in investor/state disputes before the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) and other arbitral forums and in lawsuits brought against her governmental clients in the U.S. courts, governed as to jurisdiction by the U.S. Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. On behalf of both national government and private sector clients, she has also successfully arbitrated international commercial disputes under the arbitration rules of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), American Arbitration Association (AAA), United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), and various commodities and other specialized associations.

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Education:

  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 1987
  • University of Georgia, B.A., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, Honors Program, 1974

Languages:

French, Spanish

Representative Experience

  • Representing the Republic of Ecuador in an arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, based on a multi-million claim alleging denial of justice by the Ecuadorian courts brought by a U.S. pharmaceutical manufacturer/distributor, in a proceeding conducted in English and Spanish.
  • Representing the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in an arbitration under the ICSID Additional Facility, based on a claim of more than US$1 billion brought by a Canadian mining company under the bilateral investment treaty between Canada and Venezuela, in a proceeding conducted in Spanish and English.
  • Represented the Republic of Ecuador in an arbitration brought by a U.S. petroleum company, concerning Ecuador’s termination of a contract for the exploitation of an oil field and claims of expropriation, in a proceeding conducted in Spanish and English.
  • Represented the Republic of the Philippines in an ICC arbitration seated in Switzerland to recover over $500 million in damages for the defective design and construction of a nuclear power plant by a U.S. corporation.
  • Represented the Republic of Guyana in an ICC arbitration based in London against an Australian-American company, over claims that the Guyana Government expropriated the company’s contract rights.
  • Represented the Republic of Nicaragua in an arbitration under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, to obtain compensation for the cancellation of an investment contract for banana plantations by an American company.
  • Represented the Republic of Guyana in AAA arbitration to obtain compensation for the respondent’s violation of a contract to rehabilitate and operate a power plant.
  • Represented the Nicaraguan state-owned commodities purchasing company in an arbitration before the Rice Millers Association (US) against a U.S. grain distribution company over the company’s delivery of adulterated rice.
  • Represented a Malaysian petroleum services company in arbitrations under the AAA Arbitration Rules and the Rules of the Maritime Arbitrators Association in Houston (Texas) over claims related to the rehabilitation of a drilling rig.
  • Defending the Republic of Guyana and its state-owned sugar corporation in a lawsuit brought by U.S. and Canadian companies in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York over alleged trademark violations and libel.
  • Defending the Republic of Angola, the Angolan Embassy in the United States, and numerous Angolan government officials in a lawsuit brought by a foreign national in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York alleging libel and other torts.
  • Defended the Republic of Chile and Chilean government officials in a lawsuit brought by an individual in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York over alleged violations of his human rights by the Chilean courts.
  • Defended the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in a lawsuit brought by two Venezuelan mining companies in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit over the termination of diamond and gold mining concessions.
  • Defend two subsidiaries of the state-owned oil company of Venezuela in a lawsuit brought by a U.S. company in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida over contracts for the delivery of food products to Venezuela.
  • Defended the Plurinational State of Bolivia in a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York emanating from the nationalization of a telecommunications company and the attempt by the former investor to seize the telecommunications company’s assets in New York and London.
  • Defended the Kingdom of Thailand in a proceeding before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York brought by the families of victims of the 2004 tsunami and accusing the Thai Government of negligence in providing adequate warning of the tsunami.
  • Defended the Republics of the Philippines, Nicaragua and Liberia in over two dozen lawsuits before the U.S. District Courts in New York, New Jersey, the District of Columbia, and Florida concerning breach of contract, expropriation claims and attempts to seize assets owned by those governments in the courts’ jurisdiction.
  • Defended the Republic of Guyana in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against a U.S. investor claiming expropriation of its contract rights and requesting an order from the court freezing all international and U.S. economic assistance to Guyana.
  • Defended the Republic of Tanzania before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in proceedings to obtain judicial orders to transfer properties from the Embassy of Tanzania to private individuals.
  • Janis H. Brennan, Republic of Argentina v. BG Group PLC, The Institute for Transnational Arbitration News and Notes (Fourth Quarter 2011)
  • Janis H. Brennan and Andrew B. Loewenstein, "Supreme Court Decides Important Foreign Sovereign Immunity Issues: Dole Food Corp. v. Patrickson," International Law News (Summer 2003)

Involvement

  • Arbitrator in International Chamber of Commerce and American Arbitration Association international arbitration cases
  • Panel of Arbitrators, International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes and Kuala Lumpur Regional Arbitration Centre
  • North American Representative, International Chamber of Commerce Commission on Arbitration
  • American Bar Association, International Section
  • American Bar Association, Working Group of the Hague Convention on Exclusive Choice of Court Agreements (2001-2003)
  • Adjunct faculty member and guest lecturer on International Arbitration and on Privatizations, American University Washington College of Law
  • Lecturer, Seminar on The U.S. Federal Arbitration Act, American University Washington College of Law, International Commercial Arbitration Summer Program, 2010 - Present
  • Preparatory Conference and Arbitral Procedure in Investor/State Arbitrations, Conference on "How to Handle a BIT Arbitration, Center for International Arbitration, American University Washington College of Law, October 2012
  • Recent Trends in International Investment Agreements:  Substantive Provisions and Investor/State Dispute Settlement Provisions," presented at the Seventh Annual ICC New York Conference, September 2012
  • Investor/State and International Commercial Arbitration:  Recent Developments and Practical Aspects, Seminar presented to the Ukraine Government, Kiev, Ukraine, September 2012
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Bar Admissions

  • District of Columbia

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia