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"Praised for the vast experience he brings to both investor state and commercial arbitrations" - Chambers & Partners UK, 2013
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James Lloyd Loftis

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Loftis, James Lloyd

James heads our International Dispute Resolution practice and focuses his practice on the arbitration and litigation of international commercial and investor-state disputes and on counseling clients involved in matters involving international law and treaties.

His practice includes disputes involving all aspects of energy, infrastructure development and construction, and disputes under investment laws and treaties, as well as boundary disputes, cross-border technology disputes and sovereign debt. He also represents and advises clients in reviews under U.S. national security law (CFIUS) and anti-corruption law (FCPA) and in international and cross-border litigation, including arbitral award enforcement in a number of jurisdictions.

He is a member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration, is listed in Global Arbitration Review, is the ABA's delegate to the LCIA Court of Arbitration in London, is listed in Legal Media Group's (Euromoney's) Expert Guide to Commercial Arbitration, and is ranked in international arbitration in Chambers Global, Chambers UK, Chambers USA and Legal 500 UK. He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America® for international arbitration.

In 2009, James was appointed as adjunct professor at the University of Texas School of Law where he teaches international investment law and investor-state arbitration and international commercial arbitration. In 2011, he was appointed as Chair of the Advisory Board for the Global Center for Energy, International Arbitration and Environmental Law at the University of Texas School of Law.

From 1997 - 2000, James served in Geneva, Switzerland, as chief counsel for the Oil Sector (E1) and Construction and Engineering (E3) Panels of the United Nations Compensation Commission (the Gulf War claim tribunal).

James maintains offices in London and in Houston, and is admitted in Texas, in the Dubai International Financial Centre Courts and in the Senior Courts of England and Wales. 

Representative Experience
International Arbitration - Energy
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  • Represented owner of power generation facility in UNCITRAL arbitration with offtaker/guarantor over credit support obligations for power sales involving claims in excess of US$1 billion
  • Represented consortia of international and domestic companies in two arbitrations arising out of a hugely successful oil field offshore India in connection with a series of profit sharing disputes with the Government of India. These are collectively valued at just short of US$1 billion, and have spawned significant satellite litigation in the courts of both India and Malaysia
  • Represented purchaser of interests in upstream investments in South America in LCIA arbitration with seller over claims for indemnity payments in excess of US$250 million due for government’s cancellation of licenses
Investor-State and International Law Disputes
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  • Represent owners of power barges in arbitration with government of Latin American state over violations of BIT
  • Represent North American investor in LCIA arbitration against Armenia over breach of investment agreement and BIT claims
  • Representing two upstream investors in Ecuador in connection with government attempts at forced conversion of PSAs on four blocks to service contracts and in relation to expropriatory tax legislation and advising under production sharing agreements and relevant bilateral investment treaties
International Arbitration - Construction / Infrastructure Development
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  • Advising a power and water consortium over substantial construction claims for liquidated damages and consequential losses under EPC in Saudi Arabia
  • Representing a Middle Eastern-European joint venture company in connection with substantial disputed construction claims under an EPC for an integrated power and water project in the Middle East and claims under the offtake agreement with the government’s power and water agency
  • Represented a European client in ICC arbitration over construction disputes over Middle Eastern power and water project involving over US$60 million of late-filed change-order claims and liquidated damages counterclaims
International Arbitration - Commercial Disputes (M&A / Finance)
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  • Act for minority shareholder in South Asian telecoms company in dispute relating to put option agreement with majority shareholder and allocation of responsibility for potential tax obligations to government valued at more than US$1 billion
  • Represent Middle Eastern financial institution in litigation in DIFC Court and LCIA arbitration proceedings with former member and shareholder
  • Represent former officers of hedge fund in arbitration proceedings against former employer over post-termination capital contribution demands
International Arbitration - Technology / Environment
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  • Act for sponsors of major alternative fuels project in LCIA arbitration against fuel synthesis technology provider
  • Acted for an Asian oil and gas company in arbitration with a service supplier over drilling and environmental costs
  • Represented the seller in an ICC arbitration involving buyer’s claims on environmental representations and warranties for a hazardous waste facility in Latin America
International Litigation
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  • Advise European client in connection with litigation pending in the Iraqi courts over a former CPA contract
  • Advise client involved in Nigerian litigation over oil and gas agreements and claims by former consultant for participation interest in fields
  • Represent client in connection with potential claims by UK Serious Fraud Office relating to Iraq Oil for Food contracts
Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Education and Professional Background
  • The University of Texas School of Law, J.D., 1990
  • University of Texas, B.B.A., 1983
  • Admitted to practice: Texas, 1990; U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Fifth and Federal Circuits; U.S. District Court for the Southern, Northern and Western Districts of Texas
  • Granted full rights of audience before the Dubai International Financial Centre Court, 2009
  • Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales, 2013
  • Other Languages: French (proficient), Russian, and Spanish (reading proficient)
Professional Recognition
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  • Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration 2015
  • Ranked in Litigation - Best Lawyers UK, 2014
  • Ranked in Energy & Natural Resources - Chambers UK, 2014
Activities and Affiliations
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  • Member: Energy Arbitrators' List ("EAL"), 2013
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, the University of Texas at Austin School of Law (2009-present)
  • U.S. Delegate: ICC Commission on Arbitration
Publications and Presentations
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Solicitors and Registered Foreign Lawyers.  A list of partner names is available for inspection at CityPoint, One Ropemaker Street, London EC2Y 9UE.  Vinson & Elkins RLLP is a limited liability partnership formed under the laws of New York authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (No. 0079019). 

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James Lloyd Loftis
1001 Fannin Street
Suite 2500
Houston, TX 77002-6760

Tel  +1.713.758.1024
Fax  +1.713.615.5143

Alternate Office
CityPoint, 33rd Floor
One Ropemaker Street
London EC2Y 9UE
United Kingdom
Tel  +44.20.7065.6027
Fax  +44.20.7065.6001


Arbitration and ADR

Asia Pacific

Latin America


Commercial and Business Litigation

Construction and Engineering

Dispute Resolution - International

Energy and Natural Resources

Energy/Oil and Gas Litigation


Export Controls and Economic Sanctions


Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

International Dispute Resolution


Middle East and North Africa

Mining and Metals

Project Finance and Development


"Praised for the vast experience he brings to both investor state and commercial arbitrations" - Chambers & Partners UK, 2013