Attorney-Client Privilege & International Arbitration

Cardozo Journal of Conflict Resolution, 2019

53 Pages Posted: 8 Jun 2019

See all articles by Ibrahim Shehata

Ibrahim Shehata

Maastricht University - Department of International and European Law; Cairo University - Faculty of Law

Date Written: May 17, 2019


This article attempts to offer a new perspective to the existing debate concerning the applicable standard of attorney-client privilege in international commercial and investment arbitration. This article starts by analyzing the main convergences and divergences in the concept of attorney-client privilege across four national jurisdictions. In this regard, this article sheds light upon the divergence of opinions between international arbitration scholars in the literature and how international arbitration operates in practice. For instance, the standard of the “most-protective law,” which most arbitration scholars vouch should be the right answer, is not actually the most featured standard in the published arbitral procedural decisions included in this survey (featured only three times out of forty-four published arbitral procedural decisions). Finally, the author acknowledges how the IBA Rules were successful in establishing an accepted norm of document production which most international arbitration practitioners adopt. Therefore, the main purpose of this article is in fact analyzing how far the relationship and interaction between attorney-client privilege and document production should play a role in shaping up an adequate standard of attorney-client privilege; a standard that can emerge as a best practice in international arbitration.

Keywords: Attorney-Client Privilege, International Arbitration, IBA Rules on Taking of Evidence, Empirical Analysis

Suggested Citation

Shehata, Ibrahim, Attorney-Client Privilege & International Arbitration (May 17, 2019). Cardozo Journal of Conflict Resolution, 2019, Available at SSRN:

Ibrahim Shehata (Contact Author)

Maastricht University - Department of International and European Law ( email )


Cairo University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Cairo University Rd

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