An appeals court judge Thursday questioned whether ruling against Jones Day and its subpoena against Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe would doom the firm’s attempt to gather evidence in an underlying employment arbitration dispute against a former partner.

At the heart of the case is whether a court that isn’t the “seat” of an arbitration proceeding can enforce a subpoena that a third party is refusing to comply with. The summons in question stem from international arbitration Jones Day initiated against a partner who left the firm for Orrick in 2019 and, in the process, allegedly violated a partnership agreement.