Section 1782 and International Arbitral Tribunals: Some Key Considerations in Key Cases – Vol. 23 No. 3-4

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Author: Arthur W. Rovine*

Published: January 2013

Description: This paper is devoted to § 1782 of Title 28 of the U.S. Judicial Code, and particularly its application to private international tribunals. The subject was of great interest to Hans Smit. It was one on which he spent substantial time and effort, including the question of its application to international arbitration tribunals. Among Hans’ most significant faculty positions at Columbia Law School was the directorship of the Project on International Procedure, along with Ruth Bader Ginsburg, at that time a research associate and associate director. Smit was the leader of the team at Columbia that wrote a new and improved version of § 1782 which Congress enacted in 1964. The team worked with the U.S. Commission and Advisory Committee on International Rules of Judicial Procedure, with Smit serving as a reporter for some ten years. As we all know, Hans was not shy in discussing his accomplishments. He wrote that the changes in 1964 to the revised § 1782 were “drastic.” “[It] greatly liberalized assistance given to foreign and international litigants and tribunals and, in the thirty-five years that followed its enactment, has been applied in scores of cases,” he wrote in the Syracuse Journal of International Law and Commerce in 1998. And since he wrote those words, it has been applied in many more cases. Hans had said in 1965 that …

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*International Arbitrator; Director of the Fordham Conference on International Arbitration an Mediation; Editor of Contemporary Issues in International Arbitration and Mediation: The Fordham Papers; Adjunct Professor of Law, Fordham Law School; former President of the American Society of International Law; former Chairman of the American Bar Association International Law Section; former Chair of the New York City Bar Association International Law Committee.