Matthew H. Kirtland

Co Partner-in-Charge, Washington, DC
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

Matthew H. Kirtland

Matthew H. Kirtland



Matthew Kirtland is the Co-Partner-in-Charge and Co-Head of Disputes of the Washington, D.C. office.

Since joining in 1997, he has focused his practice on dispute resolution, with an emphasis on international arbitration, complex commercial litigation and arbitration and white collar defense. He leads the Washington office international arbitration practice and transnational litigation practice. He has represented corporate and individual clients from a diverse range of business sectors including aerospace, banking and finance, commodities, consulting, consumer finance, energy, health care, infrastructure, insurance, media & entertainment, mining, manufacturing, oilfield services, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals, satellite television, securities, technology, telecommunications and utilities.

Mr. Kirtland has first and second-chair experience in international and domestic arbitration, and federal and state court, both at the trial and appellate level. In the field of international arbitration, he has handled proceedings before the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA), the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). He also has handled ad hoc proceedings using the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) rules, as well as other, more specialized rules of procedure.  He has extensive experience in arbitration-related litigation, including recognition and enforcement proceedings, including proceedings involving the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act.

Mr. Kirtland's experience in regulatory and white collar matters includes representing corporate and individual clients, including officers and directors, in government contracts matters, investigations and civil, criminal and administrative proceedings involving RICO, the False Claims Act (including its qui tam provisions), the Clean Water Act, securities fraud, health care fraud, defense contracting fraud and bank fraud.

Professional experience

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  • JD, Duke University School of Law, 1997
  • BA, History and Communications, Macalester College, 1994

Mr. Kirtland is licensed to practice in Maryland and the District of Columbia. He also is admitted to practice before the United States District Courts for Maryland and the District of Columbia, the United States Court of Federal Claims and the United States Courts of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, the Sixth Circuit and the District of Columbia.

  • District of Columbia Bar
  • Maryland State Bar

Representative cases include:

  • Representation of mining company in multi-jurisdictional recognition and enforcement proceedings; amount at issue exceeds $750 million; ICSID proceedings; US, French and English courts
  • Representation of foreign sovereign in multi-jurisdictional recognition and enforcement proceedings; amount at issue exceeds $500 million; ECT proceedings; US, Swedish and English courts
  • Representation of international satellite television company in commercial dispute; amount at issue exceeds $2 billion; LCIA proceedings
  • Representation of defense contractor in transnational litigation with US-based supplier; U.S. District Court for the Central District of California
  • Representation of petrochemical company in multi-jurisdictional RICO dispute
  • Representation of armored vehicle company in commercial dispute with US-based supplier; ICC proceedings
  • Representation of international conglomerate in multi-jurisdictional arbitral/litigation proceedings involving Senegalese gold mining concession; ICC proceedings; Canadian and New York courts
  • Representation of UK-based technology company in successful enforcement of international arbitral award against US-based judgment debtor; ad hoc arbitral proceedings; U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • Representation of international oilfield services company in commercial dispute under deferred payment agreement; ad hoc arbitral proceedings
  • Representation of international satellite television distributor in commercial dispute; amount at issue exceeds $375 million; LCIA proceedings
  • Representation of international conglomerate in commercial dispute in the financing sector; amount at issue exceeds $350 million; LCIA proceedings
  • Representation of utilities company in expropriation dispute with sovereign state; ICSID proceedings
  • Representation of international commercial services entity in dispute with joint venturer; UNCITRAL proceedings
  • Representation of international service industry company in commercial dispute with local distributor; ICDR proceedings
  • Representation of international media services entity in dispute with domestic supplier; ICDR proceedings
  • Representation of American energy conglomerate in expropriation dispute with sovereign state; ICSID proceedings
  • Representation of international biotechnology company in commercial dispute with supplier
  • Representation of individual in dispute under deferred payment agreement after sale of company
  • Representation of nationwide pharmaceutical company in qui tam health care fraud litigation and parallel criminal investigation for alleged violations of the Anti-Kickback Statute
  • Representation of international energy company named as defendant in multi-billion dollar litigation
  • Representation of chief financial officer of publicly traded corporation in civil securities fraud litigation
  • Representation of defense contractor in qui tam litigation; persuaded United States to decline to intervene then obtained dismissal of claims with prejudice; affirmed on appeal
  • Representation of nationwide pharmacy chain in qui tam health care fraud litigation and parallel criminal investigation
  • Representation of corporate officer of independent gas producer implicated in an energy price manipulation investigation by federal and state authorities
  • Representation of nationwide utilities company in commercial dispute
  • Representation of private university in wrongful discharge suit brought by former employee; AAA proceedings
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Global Litigators, Lawdragon, 2021, 2023
  • Washington, D.C. Super Lawyer, alternative dispute resolution, Thomson Reuters, 2013 – 2020
  • Client Choice Award for Arbitration: United States, International Law Office (ILO), 2012
  • Legal 500 US, Recommended Lawyer, Dispute resolution - International arbitration, The Legal 500, 2011, 2014, 2016 – 2020, 2022-2023
  • Legal 500 US, Recommended Lawyer, Dispute resolution - International litigation, The Legal 500, 2020 – 2021
  • Legal 500 US, Recommended Lawyer, Dispute resolution - Product liability, mass tort and class action: consumer products (including tobacco), The Legal 500, 2018
  • Legal 500 Latin America, Recommended lawyer, International Firms: International Arbitration, The Legal 500, 2017, 2019, 2021, 2023
  • Expert Guides, Commercial Arbitration, Legal Media Group, 2020

Selected publications include:

  • Contributor, ILO Arbitration & ADR Newsletter, USA (2017)
  • Co-author, "A Limited Case: U.S. Confirmation of an Annulled International Arbitration Award," ABA Section on Dispute Resolution Arbitration Committee E-Newsletter, September 2016
  • Co-author, "International Arbitration – Banking and Finance: Outside Counsel Perspective," International Commercial Arbitration Practice: 21st Century Perspectives, co-eds, H. A. Grigera Naon and P.E. Mason, LexisNexis (2016)
  • "Criminal Enforcement of the Federal Securities Act," The Federal Securities Act of 1933, LexisNexis (2012)
  • "Private RICO Litigation," The Federal Securities Act of 1933, LexisNexis (2012)
  • Co-author, "Recent Challenges to Arbitrators in Investment Treaty Cases," IBA Arbitration News, March 2011
  • Co-author, "Moral damages in investment treaty arbitration and Desert Line v Yemen," Arbitration News, Newsletter of the International Bar Association Legal Practice Division, March 2010
  • "Proximate Cause: Must a Plaintiff Rely on the Defendants' Misrepresentation?" CIVIL Rico Actions, May 2004
  • Co-author, "Extraterritorial Application of U.S. Antitrust Law: What is a 'Direct Substantial, and Reasonably Foreseeable Effect' under the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvement Act?," Laws of International Trade, August 2003
  • Co-author, "Oiling the Wheels: Addressing Bribery Overseas in U.K. and U.S. Litigation," Power Economics, April 30, 2002.  Reprinted in Water Power Dam Construction, June 2002
  • Co-author, "When the G-Man Knocks," Legal Times, June 3, 2002
  • Co-author, "Project Bad Bundle: Government Misuse of the False Claims Act," Health Care Fraud & Abuse Newsletter, 1998

Recent speaking engagements include:

  • Course instructor, "Mechanics of International Arbitration," International Investments and Investor-State-Arbitration Seminar, International Law Institute, 2011-2016
  • Panel member, Practical Experience vis-a-vis Constitutional Law, Georgetown University, 2016
  • Panel moderator, CPR Regional Meeting, Toronto, 2016
  • Panel member, "4th Annual Arbitration and Investment Summit - Caribbean, Lain America and Other Emerging Markets," College of the Bahamas, 2015
  • Course instructor, "Damages and Remedies in International Arbitration," International Law Institute, October-November 2011
  • Panel member, "Relevance of UNIDROIT Principles in Disputes," Symposium on 2010 UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts:  Towards A "Global Contract Law," Georgetown University, October 2011
  • Spoke on arbitration mechanics to delegation of judicial officials from Uganda and Philippines, "Arbitration for Judges Seminar," August 2011
  • Panel moderator, "Latest Developments in Investment Arbitration," Georgetown International Arbitration Society, March 2011
  • Course instructor, "Compensation and Damages in Investment Arbitration," International Law Institute, November 2010
  • Spoke to a delegation of government investment officials from various African and Asian states on the subject of Damages and Compensation in Oil & Gas Disputes in Investment Arbitration, October 2010
  • Panel member, "Fourth Annual Investment Treaty Arbitration Conference: A Debate and Discussion," Investment Arbitration in the Asia-Pacific Region, April 2010
  • Panel member, "Arbitration of Oil & Gas Disputes in Latin America: Taking Stock," International Law and Practice in the Exploration and Production of Hydrocarbons: The Latin American Case, Georgetown University, February 2010
  • Course instructor, "Introduction to International Investment Law with BITs, Multilateral Agreements, Contracts and Statutes," International Law Institute, October 2009
  • Course instructor, "The Calculation of Damages in Investor State Arbitration," International Law Institute, October 2009
  • London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA)
    • North American User's Council
  • United States Council for International Business (USCIB)
    • Arbitration Committee
    • Young Arbitrators Forum
  • International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
    •  Joint Task Force on Arbitration and Criminal Law
  • American Bar Association
    • Arbitration Committee
    • Advisory Committee
  • District of Columbia Bar Association; Maryland Bar Association
  • International Bar Association
    • Arbitration Committee
    • North American Regional Forum

Among other pursuits, Mr. Kirtland serves on the Executive Board of the Washington, D.C. Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Annual Ball.