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Litigation, Arbitration and Regulatory

Our litigation lawyers in Kenya are skilled in litigation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution including arbitration and mediation. 

We give careful consideration to the commercial objectives of clients by carrying out an evaluation of both the legal and reputational risks of each case and seeking the best dispute resolution strategy and approach for the transaction. 

In an environment where regulation and its enforcement will only increase, we recognize that effective compliance and avoidance of regulatory intervention are critical for our clients’ businesses.

We have the local knowledge to advise on a wide range of regulatory issues and develop case strategies, including technically challenging or complex multi-jurisdictional matters. 

Our partners are routinely appointed as arbitrators and, supported by the firm’s associates, are retained in high-profile cases by both multinational and local blue-chip companies as well as the Kenyan government and various state entities. 

Our capabilities include:

  • Administrative law
  • Antitrust and competition
  • Aviation litigation and regulation
  • Banking and finance litigation
  •  Construction and infrastructure disputes
  • Corporate and securities litigation
  • Cross-border dispute resolution
  • Financial services regulatory
  • Governance and compliance
  • Insurance and reinsurance disputes
  • International arbitration
  • IT and telecoms disputes

Experience has included advising:

  • The Republic of Kenya in multibillion investment arbitration proceedings filed by Cortec Mining Kenya Limited at the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
  • A leading betting company in relation to a petition and applications challenging agency notices issued by the Kenya Revenue Authority to the company’s bankers and a telecommunication company demanding payment of a colossal sum of KES8 billion (approximately USD84 million). This was being purported to withhold tax on winnings of punters (players) for the years of income 2015 and 2016.
  • A leading beverage manufacturer at the Supreme Court of Kenya in a dispute over the distribution of beverages by Kenya’s leading beer manufacturer. The indicated value of the business under controversy is about USD30 million.
  • The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and its chairman before the Supreme Court of Kenya in the petitions that resulted from the March 2013, August 2017 and October 2017 presidential elections where various petitioners had sought to challenge the presidential election results as announced by the IEBC.
  • A leading bank in a dispute over the realization of assets. The suit has made its way to the Supreme Court of Kenya. The amount in dispute is in excess of USD14 million.
  • The Office of the Attorney General of the Republic of Kenya, in relation to a constitutional petition challenging presidential and ministerial appointments of chairpersons and members to various parastatal boards.
  • A company in a judicial review application seeking to stop the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) from using the criminal process against its directors on account of a tax dispute which is yet to be determined in accordance with the Tax Procedures Act.
  • A leading hotel in arbitration proceedings filed by a contractor alleging breach of the terms of the construction agreement and where the hotel has mounted a counterclaim. The sums in dispute exceed USD10 million.
  • A consultancy company in an application for judicial review orders seeking to quash assessment and agency notices issued by the Kenya Revenue Authority against the company for sums in excess of USD1 million.
  • Trustees and executors of a high-net-worth estate in relation to litigation arising from the management and administration of the estate and assets in terms of the instrument establishing the trust.
  • A leading bank in relation to a claim by a state corporation arising from an advance payment guarantee issued by the bank in respect of an energy sector project. The value of the subject matter is in excess of USD14 million.
  • Ranked in Dispute Resolution & Arbitration (Chambers & Partners 2017-2019)
  • Ranked in Dispute Resolution (The Legal 500 2017-2019)

Why the court validated the Njenga Karume Trust

The outcome of the epic court battle pitting a faction of the children of the late Cabinet Minister and tycoon Mr. Njenga Karume against the trustees appointed by him to manage his multi-billion-shilling empire was anxiously awaited not only by the parties themselves, but everyone interested in succession law. The dispute split the family down in the middle, with some of the family members siding with the trustees which added more flavour to the contest.

International arbitration publication

IKM is pleased to announce that Kamau Karori and Ken Melly have authored one of the chapters, titled ‘The Attitude of Kenyan Courts towards Arbitration’ in a  newly published book titled ‘Rethinking the Role of African National Courts in Arbitration’.