Academy Member Inducted 2010

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James M. Gaitis, Arbitrator, Tucson, Arizona.

James M. Gaitis

International Arbitration Chambers
6421 E. Paseo Otono
Tucson, AZ 85750
Tel: (406) 471-4252
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Recognized to Arizona Chapter for Arbitration

Regularly travels out of state to: Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Wyoming

Other ADR Services: ADR Training/CME, Early Neutral Evaluation, Facilitation & Systems Design, Fact Finding, Mini-Trial Judge
Video Conferencing
  • Practice Commenced: 1990
  • Total Arbitrations (as of Dec 2022): 150
Practice Percentages


IN THE TIME OF COVID-19/THE CORONAVIRUS:  James Gaitis has subtantial experience--as an arbitrator, as trial counsel, and as Special Counsel--in over 100 court cases and arbitrations involving disputes regarding the applicability of force majeure provisions in commercial contracts. In those cases and arbitrations, the assertion of a defense of force majeure (and also, in many instances, related defenses of impossibility, frustration of purpose, and impracticability) was associated with a variety of occurrences--such as accidents, fires, epidemics, equipment failures and malfunctions, failures of markets and sources of supply, and governmental regulations--that allegedly served to excuse contractual performance. 

James Gaitis is a long-standing member of the Texas and Montana bars, a former 30-year member of the Oklahoma Bar, the Editor-in-Chief of the second, third, and fourth editions of The College of Commercial Arbitrators Guide to Best Practices in Commercial Arbitration , the Editor of The Leading Practioners' Guide to International Oil & Gas Industry Arbitration (2015 Juris Pub), and the former Director of the LL.M in International Dispute Resolution Programme at the Centre for Energy, Petroleum & Mineral Law and Policy, Post-Graduate School of Management & Policy, University of Dundee, and Principal Teaching and Research Fellow. Over the course of his 43-year legal career he has acted as in-house counsel, outside trial and transactional counsel, special counsel, expert witness, ADR Consultant, Arbitration Law and Practice expert witness, and arbitrator/ADR Neutral in a broad variety of complex matters pertaining to the oil & gas industry and energy industry, as well as to general commercial contracts, construction, and real estate transactions.

In addition to serving as trial and appellate counsel in hundreds of district court cases, regulatory proceedings, and related appeals, he has served as an arbitrator in approximately 250 arbitrations relating to: a broad variety of oil & gas disputes involving the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry; commercial contracts; sales of goods, UCC Article 2; fiduciary duties & agency law; trusts; franchise agreements; electric utility, coal supply contracts, fraud, tortious breach of contract; domain names; patents; service agreements; construction lending/project finance; real estate, restrictive covenants, leasing, homeowners associations; construction claims (defects, delays, lack of supervision); antitrust, restraint of trade; noncompete agreements; requirements contracts; acquisitions, sales of assets, maufacturing and domain names. His experience as oil & gas attorney and arbitrator spans substantial involvement in virtually every aspect of the oil & gas industry, including experience in transactions and disputes regarding onshore and offshore exploration, drilling, and production; joint operating agreements; unitization agreements; gas sales contracts; natural gas supply contracts; joint ventures; service agreements and companies; gas gathering; measurement; gas processing; farmout agreements; oil production and measurement; oil & gas technology and intellectual property; joint ventures and partnerships, and gas and liquids storage, sales, and distribution.

For further details regarding Mr. Gaitis' background and experience, see:


He is the author of a variety of lengthy law review articles on the topic of arbitration, some of which have been repeatedly cited to the United States Supreme Court and lower state and federal courts. A frequent speaker and lecturer, Mr. Gaitis is widely considered to be an authority on arbitration practice and vacatur law. 


For more information on Mr. Gaitis' background and the services he offers, see the following website:





Case Experience

  • Agricultural
  • Anti-Trust
  • Appellate
  • Banking & Finance
  • Bankruptcy/Creditors
  • Class Actions
  • Commercial/Business
  • Construction
  • Contract Disputes
  • Cross Cultural
  • Energy Sector (Oil/Gas)
  • Engineering
  • Environmental
  • Franchise
  • Industrial
  • Intellectual Property
  • International
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Mining
  • Partnerships
  • Real Estate
  • Shareholder Disputes
  • Title Disputes
  • Torts
  • Trademarks/Patents
  • Trusts / Estates
  • Utilities


  • University of Notre Dame BA 1976 (with honors)
  • University of Iowa College of Law JD 1978 (Note & Comment Editor, Iowa Law Review)

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Fellow and Chartered Arbitrator, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) (2003-2019)
  • Fellow, College of Commercial Arbitrators (2004-2019) and former member, Board of Directors (2006-2008; 2012-2014)
  • Institute for Transnational Arbitration (through 2019)
  • Association of Petroleum Negotiators
  • Charter Member, National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals
  • ICDR Panel of International Arbitrators (through 2019)
  • ICDR International Energy Arbitrators Panel (through 2019)
  • ICDR Energy Arbitrators List
  • British Columbia International Commercial Arbitration Centre--International Panel (through 2019)
  • CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution: Cross-Border Panel (North America-based international arbitrators (through 2019)
  • CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution:  Energy, Oil and Gas Panel(through 2019)
  • CPR International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution: Real Estate Panel (through 2019)
  • American Arbitration Association Construction Panel (through 2019)
  • American Arbitration Association Large, Complex Case Panel (through 2019)
  • American Arbitration Association National Energy Panel (through 2019)
  • American Arbitration Association Real Estate Panel (through 2019)
  • American Arbitration Association National Roster of Neutrals (through 2019)
  • State Bar of Texas
  • State Bar of Montana (Member, Dispute Resolution Committee--1993-96 (Vice Chair 1995-96))
  • Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN) 
  • Board of Editors, The Montana Lawyer 1993-96 (Editor, Annual Developments in the Law feature (1994-96)
  • Oklahoma Bar Association (1980-2009)
  • Global Faculty Member & Honorary Lecturer, Centre for Energy, Petroleum & Mineral Law & Policy, University of Dundee, Scotland (2007-2013)
  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (member, Standing Subcommittee on Arbitration) (2015-18)

Rates Information

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