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Stefan Bessman

Partner

Phone
+46 766 170 914

Assistant
Lena Manley Widerberg

I have more than 25 years’ experience of dispute resolution. I represent clients both in arbitration and before courts of law and have acted as lead counsel in several landmark cases tried in the Swedish Supreme Court. I have a special focus on insurance and reinsurance law advising clients on coverage disputes and other insurance related disputes as well as on advisory and regulatory aspects of insurance law. I also handle disputes in the infrastructure and construction area.

I became a partner at Westerberg in July 2021. I am a member of the Swedish Bar Association since 1996 and graduated from Stockholm University (LL.M.) in 1989. I am a member of Association Internationale de Droit D’Assurances and the Swedish Insurance Law Association. I serve as a member of the board of the Swedish Sports Confederation since 2013.

Besides Swedish I am fluent in English.

Work highlights include acting for:

  • more than 40 reinsurance companies against the bankruptcy estate of a Swedish credit & guarantee insurer in arbitration and litigation arising out of coverage issues relating to reinsurance of financial guarantees.
  • a Finnish reinsurer against a Swedish insurer and a Luxembourg bank in litigation relating to financial guarantees for real estate acquisition.
  • a German construction company against a Ukrainian State Entity in arbitration relating to a construction project at a damaged nuclear power plant.
  • a Norwegian insurer in a dispute over the quality of a portfolio of insurance policies purchased by the Norwegian company.
  • a Finnish insurer in litigation relating to co-insurance of elevator accidents in the US.
  • a UK life insurer in litigation relating to recovery of overpayments to pension insurance beneficiaries.
  • a Swedish insurer in litigation and arbitration arising out of business interruption claims in the mining and automotive industries.
  • a major supplier to the automotive industry in arbitration arising out of the insolvency of a Swedish automotive company.
  • a major Russian oil company in arbitration concerning a joint venture.
  • a US based insurer in litigation concerning coverage issues in D&O and Professional Indemnity claims.

Former positions include:

After a tenure of four years in the Swedish courts, including service in the Court of Appeal, I entered private practice in 1993. From 1998 until 2021 I was a partner with Baker McKenzie where I headed the dispute resolution and insurance law practice in Stockholm. I served as chairman of Baker McKenzie’s Insurance Practice Group during several years and was also appointed to several government committees in legislative matters.

Publications:

Contributing author to the Swedish edition of Karnov and a contributing author to the Juris Publishing book International Arbitration Checklist, launched in 2003.

Sources say:

“Stefan Bessman has extensive experience acting for large insurers in contentious issues including contractual, regulatory and a wide range of coverage disputes. He is described by one client as ‘a very experienced and skilled advocate and litigator’.” (Chambers and Partners 2021)

“In addition to being very experienced, Stefan Bessman is also very bright, wise and delivers well thought-through advice in challenging and complex matters.” (Legal 500 2021)

I am pleased to be ranked in the Hall of Fame by Legal 500 and in band 1 by Chambers and Partners in insurance law.

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