(ALM/Diego M. Radzinschi)
Two international arbitration partners in New York have joined K&L Gates from Cozen O’Connor, opting for a larger, global platform and allowing K&L to fill a gap in its international arbitration practice.
Martin F. Gusy and Matthew J. Weldon joined K&L Gates in New York, the firm announced Monday. Gusy had chaired the international arbitration group at Cozen O’Connor. He and Weldon have been practicing together for six years, three at Cozen O’Connor and three before that at a boutique firm Gusy founded.
Their practice grew at Cozen O’Connor to a point where they needed a more global law firm, Gusy said. They especially experienced an increase in matters out of South America and Asia.
Weldon said he will be splitting his time between the New York and Singapore offices, and will spend some time in London.
“We’ve become increasingly needed on matters that touch on various countries around the world,” Weldon said. “It fits the progress our practice has experienced over the years.”
The lateral move fills a void for both the partners and their new firm, said John Bicks, administrative partner of K&L Gates’ New York office. Gusy and Weldon were “platform-constrained,” while K&L lacked international arbitration lawyers in New York.
“It was just a practice that had really, effectively no presence in New York,” Bicks said. “To have a major commercial center like New York and not have a real international arbitration practice here I think was a shortcoming.”
The major centers for mediations and arbitrations are London, New York, Singapore and Brussels, Bicks said, and now K&L has those capabilities in all of those places. It will help the firm be more integrated, he said, handling mandatory arbitration for clients of the firm’s other practices.
“It’s important to be able to pick up the ball and handle the arbitration for the client,” Bicks said.
Gusy said he and Weldon will benefit from K&L Gates’ physical presence and international arbitration practices in other countries. Cozen O’Connor’s only offices outside the United States are in London and Toronto.
“It’s always to the client’s benefit to have attorneys involved at the places of arbitration or even licensed to practice in the jurisdiction whose laws are applicable,” Gusy said.
Gusy was a founding partner at Gusy Van der Zandt, which opened in 2008, when he hired Weldon. They went to Cozen O’Connor together in 2013.
He has worked with clients in a variety of sectors, including technology, energy, oil and gas, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, insurance and construction. He has also advised European on corporate matters related to entering and operating in the United States.
One of the partners’ biggest achievements, Gusy said, was getting a post-judgment discovery order against the Republic of Argentina, while working on behalf of a German client, ordering Argentina to disclose its global assets.
Both attorneys spoke fondly of their time at Cozen O’Connor and their experience working under commercial litigation chair Jeffrey G. Weil. The firm did not respond to a request for comment.
Gusy and Weldon said they are bringing all of their clients from Cozen O’Connor to K&L Gates.
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