Again this autumn, Waselius & Wist arranged the popular course in practical dispute resolution of commercial disputes for the law students of the University of Helsinki. This is a course that not only entitles the students to five ECTS credits but also gives them valuable insight in practical aspects of dispute resolution in business life.
The basic idea of the course is to apply theory from the school books to practice through reality-like exercises. The students were asked to, among other things, draft dispute resolution strategies for fictitious client companies, and draft case summaries, recommendations and next step plans for the board of directors in a fictitious trademark infringement dispute, as well as prepare and file a request for arbitration with the Finland Arbitration Institute.
The lectures were arranged as breakfast meetings in the meeting rooms of Waselius & Wist, where Waselius & Wist partner Bernt Juthström shared his experience of litigation in the Market Court and the District Court through some major cases that he has been involved in as counsel. The students had also the privilege of listening to presentations of experienced guest lecturers. Senior Legal Counsel Tanja Jussila from Schneider Electric gave the students a flavor of the life of an inhouse counsel and hands on training on dispute strategies and the selection of suitable and functional dispute resolution clauses. Judge Antti Heikinheimo, who is also a frequently used mediator in commercial disputes, gave a very practical oriented introduction to the interesting world of mediation, i.e. dispute resolution outside the court room.
A very popular part of the course are the excursions, and again this year the students were given the opportunity to visit the Market Court. The students were welcomed by Chief Judge Kimmo Mikkola and Market Court Judge Petri Rinkinen, who gave an interesting presentation on the work done in the Market Court. Judge Rinkinen also took the students on a tour of the house and showed the premises of the Market Court. The course was finished by a very popular visit to the Finland Arbitration Institute where the students were welcomed by Secretary General Heidi Merikalla-Teir. Her presentation of the benefits of bringing business related disputes for resolution by arbitration was very convincing and left the students inspired.
“This has been great fun” says Bernt Juthström, partner at Waselius & Wist. “It is really inspiring to share experience with young, talented and motivated students that are interested in what I do in my work as a dispute resolution specialist. A comprehensive picture of the various aspects of practical dispute resolution can only be painted through team work, and I would therefore like to thank our guest lecturers, the Market Court and the Finland Arbitration Institute for supporting this course and sharing their expertise and experience with the students.”