Case of the Day: Kazakhstan v. Lawler

The case of the day is Republic of Kazakhstan v. Lawler (D. Ariz. 2020). Big Sky Energy Corp. commenced an arbitration against Kazakhstan before ICSID, asserting a claim under the US/Kazakhstan bilateral investment treaty. The treaty does not provide protection to “any company that is controlled by non-U.S. nationals if that company does not conduct substantial business activities in the United States.” Kazakhstan sought and received leave under 28 U.S.C. § 1782 to serve a subpoena on William Lawler, Blue Sky’s principal, in order to obtain evidence to assert the jurisdictional defense. Shortly after the subpoena was served, Big Sky produced, in the context of discovery in the arbitration, the documents the subpoena had sought. Lawler then moved to quash the subpoena. (more…)

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