Home / People / Dr Niklaus J. Zaugg

Dr Niklaus J. Zaugg, LL.M.


CMS von Erlach Poncet Ltd.
Dreikönigstrasse 7
P.O. Box
8022 Zurich
Languages German, French, English, Norwegian, Spanish

Niklaus Zaugg specialises in contract law, litigation and arbitration.

He advises clients in a wide range of commercial disputes, including banking disputes, and he represents their interests both before domestic courts and international arbitral tribunals. Niklaus Zaugg has been practicing as a lawyer since 2008. His clients include Swiss financial institutions and active, listed multinational industrial companies.

Niklaus Zaugg studied at the Universities of Geneva and Zurich and received his doctorate from the University of Lucerne. He also holds an LL.M. from the University of Sydney. After working as a clerk at the District Court of Zurich, he worked in the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) in Bern and as a Diplomatic Attaché in the Political and Legal Department of the Swiss Embassy in Washington, D.C. He was also Executive Secretary of the Center for Conflict Resolution (CCR) at the University of Lucerne.

Niklaus Zaugg is recommended by 'The Legal 500'.

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'He shows willingness to dig into and understand highly specialised and industry-specific topics'; 'Niklaus is very thorough and a pleasure to work with'; 'An up-and-coming name'.

Who's Who Legal, Future Leaders – Arbitration, 2021

Niklaus Zaugg is a first-rate arbitration lawyer who stands out for his 'ability to explain complex matters in a very comprehensible way'.

Who's Who Legal, Future Leaders – Arbitration 2020

Niklaus Zaugg is 'highly recommended' for his 'skills and professionalism' in litigation proceedings, as well as his 'ability to explain complex matters in a simple and convincing way'.

Who's Who Legal, Future Leaders – Litigation, 2020

Niklaus Zaugg is an 'excellent litigator', remark impressed commentators who commend his strong banking practice.

Who's Who Legal, Future Leaders – Litigation, 2019

Niklaus Zaugg represented our company in a license agreement, in which we as the licensee needed to protect our interests by legal means vis-à-vis the licensor. He did this in an aggressive, yet highly professional manner, and the outcome was completely to our satisfaction. I almost felt sorry for the counterpart’s legal counsel, who didn’t stand a chance in the dispute with Dr. Zaugg. Based on this experience, we can highly recommend Niklaus Zaugg for legal disputes.

Client Feedback

N. Zaugg consistently delivers very high quality legal advice. His work is highly commended even from upper court judges (!). He is well organized and has an extensive knowledge in his areas of work. N. Zaugg is always available for his clients and easy to communicate with as he quickly understands where one comes from and what the client needs are. Feedback given is hands-on and always within required timeframe. A great lawyer, a hard worker and an easy-going and extremely friendly person.

Client Feedback

Relevant experience

  • Representation of a German multinational engineering company in ICC arbitrations and pre-arbitration stages.
  • Representation of a Turkish company in a SCAI arbitration relating to a contractual dispute in the airline industry.
  • Representation of Swiss bank in several parallel litigation proceedings before the Zurich District Court, the Zurich Commercial Court and the Swiss Federal Supreme Court.
  • Representation of Swiss bank before the Zurich Commercial Court and the Swiss Federal Supreme Court.
  • Representation of Swiss subsidiary of foreign bank before the Zurich District Court.
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  • 2014 – PhD (Doktorat), University of Lucerne
  • 2011 – Master of Law (LL.M.), University of Sydney Law School
  • 2006 – Concours diplomatique, Swiss Foreign Ministry
  • 2006 – Bar admission, Zurich
  • 2003 – Licence, Universities of Geneva and Zurich
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  • Zurich Bar Association (ZAV)
  • Swiss Bar Association (SAV)
  • Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA)
  • ICCA International Council for Commercial Arbitration
  • AFIA Asia-Pacific Forum for International Arbitration
  • International Association of Lawyers (UIA)
  • Norgesklubben Sveits
  • SEC Handelskammer Schweiz-Mitteleuropa
  • SwissDiplomats – ZurichNetwork 
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  • The New Swiss Financial Market Legislation – New Momentum for ADR?, juriste international 4/2019, Union Internationale des Avocats, March 2020
  • Schiedsgerichtsbarkeit als alternative Streitbeilegungsmethode, KMU-Magazin Nr. 9, September 2018
  • Implications of Third Party Funding on the integrity of arbitral proceedings – Is there need for action in Switzerland?, Von A wie Arbitration über T wie Transport bis Z wie Zivilprozess – Liber discipulorum für Professor Dr. Andreas Furrer zum 55. Geburtstag, April 2018
  • Objective scope of res judicata of arbitral awards – Is there room for discretion?, ASA Bulletin 2/2017, June 2017
  • Teil- und Zwischenschiedssprüche – Treue Diener im Dienste der Verfahrensökonomie?, Guest commentary, Zurich Chamber of Commerce, May 2016
  • Vorprozessualer Anspruch von Bankkunden auf Erstellung von Stichtagbewertungen ihrer Portfolios?, AJP/PJA 7/2015, July 2015
  • Verfahrensgliederung in der internationalen Schiedsgerichts-barkeit – Wirkungsweise von Teil- und Zwischenschieds-sprüchen unter dem 12. Kapitel IPRG, Luzerner Beiträge zur Rechtswissenschaft, Diss. Lucerne/Zurich 2014
  • How caucusing and other elements of mediation fit into International Commercial Arbitration, The Australian ADR Reporter, 7 June 2012 [Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (Australia Branch) Book Price for the best essay in the International Commercial Arbitration class 2010 (University of Sydney of Law School)]
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Lectures list

  • How to prepare a Witness Statement, Lecture at YOUNG ICCA Skills Training Workshop on Cross-Examination in International Arbitration, Zurich, May 2019
  • Schiedsgerichtsbarkeit in der Finanzindustrie – Gibt es handfeste Vorteile? Lecture and panel moderation at Swiss Chambers' Arbitration Institution Event, Zurich, March 2019
  • Zum Umgang mit Anlegerklagen, Lecture at CMS Breakfast "FIDLEG und FINIG – Herausforderungen für Unabhängige Vermögensverwalter", Zurich, November 2018
  • Multi-tiered arbitration clauses before arbitral tribunals seated in Switzerland, 13th UIA Winter Seminar, Zermatt, March 2018
  • Prozessfinanzierung in der internationalen Schiedsgerichts-barkeit – Besteht Handlungsbedarf?, incl. panel moderation, ASA Local Group/ZAV FG Schiedsgerichtsrecht, Zurich, November 2017
  • Dos and Don’ts bei der Vertragsgestaltung aus Schweizer Sicht, Handelskammer Schweiz-Mitteleuropa "Polen Kompakt", Zurich, November 2017
  • Res Judicata – Can the diverging national approaches be bridged in international arbitration?, ELSA Switzerland Summer Law School on Arbitration, Geneva, August 2017
  • Die Forderung der Beklagten: Strategien und Hindernisse rund um die Widerklage, incl. panel moderation, 3. Tagung zur Schiedsgerichtsbarkeit: Hot Topics, Europe Institute of the University of Zurich, Zurich, May 2017
  • Die Rechtskraft von Schiedssprüchen - Praxis in der Schweiz, ASA/ArbAut/LIS Dreiländer-Conference, Schaan, September 2016
  • Enforcing Contracts with Russian Parties, Switzerland Global Enterprise, Zurich, September 2015  
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A ma­jor is­sue that has been raised in the con­text of In­ter­na­tion­al Com­mer­cial Ar­bit­ra­tion (ICA) re­cent years is that ar­bit­ra­tion pro­ceed­ings have be­come in­creas­ingly costly and time con­sum­ing.1For com­par­ably...


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