John Laird is a solicitor-advocate and counsel in Crowell & Moring's London office, where he is a member of the International Dispute Resolution and Antitrust Recovery groups. John represents clients in both commercial and investment arbitration. In addition, his practice involves a wide variety of commercial litigation in the English High Court, including the pursuit and defence of competition claims. John has worked from both the Washington, D.C. and London offices of Crowell & Moring, initially as a paralegal and later training for admission as a solicitor. He was the winner of the 2011 ICSID Review Student Writing Competition and an Alumni Fund scholar during his recent master’s degree studies at the American University Washington College of Law.

Examples of representative commercial arbitration and related experience include:

  • Representing the U.K. subsidiary of a Swiss conglomerate against a U.S. company in LCIA arbitration regarding breach of a pharmaceuticals licensing agreement.
  • Representing an Egyptian consortium and Kuwaiti supply chain management company in an ICC arbitration brought by a South Korean supplier regarding a port construction subcontract.
  • Representing a European company in CIArb arbitration against a South Asian government for breach of contract; defence of related English High Court award challenge proceedings; successful English High Court award enforcement and execution proceedings and related advice on sovereign immunity.
  • Representing a South African mineral and mining company in an LCIA arbitration, securing damages of $190 million.
  • Advising an American hospitality company in ICC and ICDR arbitrations regarding management disputes at European and Middle Eastern hotels.

Examples of representative investment arbitration and related experience include:

  • Representing a Kuwaiti supply chain management company in ICSID arbitration against a Middle Eastern State claiming breaches of a bilateral investment treaty regarding a port construction project.
  • Representing a Russian national in UNCITRAL arbitration against a Middle Eastern State claiming breaches of a bilateral investment treaty regarding criminal investigations and trial procedures.
  • Advising a claimant in relation to an application for annulment of an ICSID award.
  • Advising a client regarding the recognition and enforcement in the English courts of a foreign arbitration award made under the Energy Charter Treaty and UNCITRAL Rules.
  • Advising an international hotel developer as claimant in a $600 million dispute in ICSID arbitration.
  • Advising a European construction and development consortium as claimant in ICSID arbitration.

Examples of representative English commercial and competition litigation experience include:

  • Defence of co-defendant Israeli insurer in English High Court personal injury action under English and foreign law.
  • Representing a party to Part 20 proceedings regarding a follow-on claim in the English High Court for losses arising from anti-competitive behavior in the air cargo industry.
  • Representing an AIM-listed transportation company in the English High Court in relation to the repudiation of an operating contract.
  • Advising a British public company regarding a cartel follow-on claim in the English High Court.
  • Advising a group of companies in a cartel follow-on claim in the English High Court seeking £20 million damages for illegal price fixing across Europe.
  • Advising on the recognition and enforcement of a series of New Jersey Court judgments in England and Wales.


  • Somerville College, University of Oxford, B.A. philosophy, politics, economics (2005)
  • BPP University of Professional Studies, Graduate Diploma in Law (2011)
  • BPP University of Professional Studies, Legal Practice Course (2012)
  • American University Washington College of Law, LL.M. international legal studies (2021)


Admitted as a solicitor under the laws of England and Wales, Higher Rights of Audience

Professional Memberships

  • LCIA Young International Arbitration Group
  • Young ICCA
  • Fellow, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators

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International Arbitration Experts Discuss Recent Court Decisions Mealey's International Arbitration (March 22, 2022)
Press Coverage
"Fifth Circuit Rejects the Enforcement of An International Arbitral Award Against Saudi Aramco on Sovereign Immunity Grounds," International Dispute Resolution Alert (December 8, 2021). Contacts: Randa Adra, John Laird
Client Alert / Newsletter
“Standards of Treatment 1 - Fair and Equitable Treatment, Full Protection and Security, and CIL MST and Protection”, Fundamentals of Investor-State Arbitration, International Law Institute (December 1, 2021). Lecturer: John Laird.
"UK Ruling Evinces Conflict In Int'l Award Enforcement," Law360 (November 9, 2021). Authors: Randa Adra, John Laird, and Edward Norman.
Crowell & Moring Named to Global Arbitration Review’s 2021 “GAR 100” List (July 20, 2021)
Firm News / Announcement
"Standards of Treatment, Advanced Investment Arbitration, Executive Education," Georgetown Law, ICSID and the ILI’s African Centre for Legal Excellence (November 19, 2020). Lecturers: Ian A. Laird and John Laird.
Crowell & Moring Shortlisted at Legal Business Awards 2020 (September 9, 2020)
Firm News / Announcement
"True or False: Thanks to Reforms Proposed Under the Auspices of the ICSID and UNCITRAL, Investor-State Dispute Settlement Is Finally Headed in the Right Direction?" Juris Conferences – Fourteenth Annual Investment Treaty Arbitration Conference, Washington, D.C. (June 9, 2020). Panelist: John Laird.
"Contractual Disruption Update - English Court Finds That a Warehouse Fire Following a Riot Is Not a Force Majeure Event," International Dispute Resolution Alert (June 2, 2020). Contacts: Laurence Winston, John Laird, Edward Norman
Client Alert / Newsletter
"Virtual Arbitral Hearings, COVID-19, and Award Enforcement," International Dispute Resolution Alert (April 29, 2020). Contacts: Randa Adra, Ian A. Laird, Laurence Winston, John Laird
Client Alert / Newsletter

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Crowell & Moring LLP is an international law firm with offices in the United States, Europe, MENA, and Asia that represents clients in litigation and arbitration, regulatory and policy, and transactional and corporate matters. The firm is internationally recognized for its representation of Fortune 500 companies in high-stakes litigation and government-facing matters, as well as its ongoing commitment to pro bono service and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

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