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Adrian Chadwick

Adrian Chadwick

Partner, Deputy Head of Dispute Resolution Dubai and Head of Maritime, Transport & Trade


+971 4 429 2999

Adrian is a commercial dispute resolution specialist. He has substantial experience handling a wide range of general commercial disputes through litigation, arbitration, or alternative dispute resolution (ADR).

Adrian was admitted as a Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales in 1987. In addition he was admitted as a solicitor in Hong Kong (1990), as a Solicitor and Barrister of the Australian Capital Territory (1993) and as a Barrister of the High Court of Australia (1993). He has worked in several jurisdictions namely England (1985-89 and 1995-2008), Hong Kong (1989 – 1995) and Dubai, UAE (February 2008 to date).

He regularly represents his clients as Counsel in arbitrations governed by various institutional rules including DIAC, DIFC-LCIA, ICC, and LMAA. He has also been appointed as a Sole Arbitrator by DIAC for several arbitration matters. He is a member of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration (ICCA).

Adrian is registered as a Legal Practitioner of the DIFC Courts with full rights of advocacy and has appeared many times as an Advocate before these Courts and before the Special Tribunal relating to Dubai World and its subsidiaries. He is a Deputy Chairperson of the DIFC Courts' Rules Committee. He is a lecturer for the DIFC Academy of Law and handled the leading case heard by the DIFC Court on forum non conveniens.

He also regularly works with our UAE Advocates in connection with a wide range of disputes before the UAE Courts where the governing law of the dispute is UAE Law as applied in the Emirate of Dubai. Adrian is licensed to advise on UAE Law by the Dubai Government’s Legal Affairs Department.

Adrian has developed particular experience handling multi-jurisdiction enforcement of judgments and arbitration awards including directly through the UAE Courts or through the DIFC Court as a conduit court for enforcement in onshore Dubai. He has appeared as an expert witness before Courts and Arbitration Tribunals including, before the Sudanese Courts on enforcement of foreign court judgments in England.

For a considerable part of his legal career Adrian specialised in handling shipping and international trade matters in London (with Waterson Hicks, a boutique specialist shipping and international trade practice) and in Hong Kong (with Clyde & Co) and this remains an important part of his work load. He handles both contentious and non-contentious shipping work. As well as dealing with charterparty and bill of lading disputes he has considerable experience of shipping finance, newbuilding and vessel repair and ship sale/purchase transactions.


  • Adrian Chadwick handles a broad range of commercial disputes in litigation, and also acts as both arbitration counsel and arbitrator on a number of cases. His wide commercial disputes practice is complemented by a specialism in maritime and trade disputes. A peer commented that "he is strong on all fronts" and "great at giving practical legal advice."

    Chambers Global, 2021

  • The esteemed Adrian Chadwick possesses deep experience in shipping litigation and arbitration. He acts for vessel owners and P&I clubs as well as clients from the finance and energy sectors on a broad range of contentious matters. Sources opine: “He is a good, strong player who fights his corner for the client,” while noting that "he is always forthcoming with the necessary pragmatic advice."

    Chambers Global, 2021

  • Adrian Chadwick is a very good and experienced shipping lawyer.

    Legal 500, 2020

  • Recognised Lawyer in Transport & Litigation

    Whos Who Legal, 2020

  • Adrian Chadwick is regarded by clients as a “commercially-oriented and experienced shipping lawyer”.

    Chambers Global, 2020

  • Adrian Chadwick is described as someone who “knows DIFC law as well as anyone” and as a “very strategic and hard-working individual”. Further sources regard him as “a capable guy who's been there for a long time and knows what he's doing”.

    Chambers Global, 2020

  • A lawyer who is “very responsive and works hard” and someone who is “good at what he does”.

    Chambers Global, 2019

  • Clients commend Adrian Chadwick for his “in-depth knowledge of this region”. He is recognised for both arbitration and litigation, and peers note he is “particularly respected”.

    Chambers Global, 2019

  • Recognised as “Leading Lawyer” for Shipping

    Legal 500, 2018

  • “Adrian Chadwich is a seasoned expert at handling litigation cases with experience in the DIFC courts and a strong market knowledge.”

    Who’s Who Legal Litigation, 2017

  • “Understand client needs.”

    Legal 500, 2017

  • Recognised as “Leading Lawyer” for Dispute Resolution

    Legal 500, 2017

  • Adrian Chadwick is described by one source as someone “who knows the market well and is a safe pair of hands.”

    Chambers Global, 2016

  • Recognised as “Leading Lawyer” for Shipping

    Legal 500, 2015

  • Adrian Chadwick focuses on shipping, trade and commercial disputes resolved through DIFC litigation or arbitration. Sources describe him as "skilled, extremely practical, and generally a pleasure to work with."

    Chambers Global 2015

  • Recommended as a "Leading Lawyer" for shipping & trade disputes.

    LEGAL 500 2014

  • "Adrian Chadwick is an 'excellent tactical litigator'."

    LEGAL 500 2012