AA 1996—time for bringing challenges and appeals and exhaustion of other arbitral processes
AA 1996—time for bringing challenges and appeals and exhaustion of other arbitral processes

The following Arbitration guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • AA 1996—time for bringing challenges and appeals and exhaustion of other arbitral processes
  • The time limit for bringing challenges and/or appeals against arbitration awards
  • Exhaustion of any available arbitral process of appeal or review
  • Extensions of time and when they may be granted
  • Making the application for an extension of time

This Practice Note considers the time limits for bringing challenges and appeals in respect of arbitral awards before the English court, as well as related matters. Where relevant, this Practice Note should be read with our guidance on the substantive challenge and appeal applications (see the ‘Related documents’).

The time limit for bringing challenges and/or appeals against arbitration awards

Under the Arbitration Act 1996 (AA 1996), challenges and appeals in respect of arbitral awards can be brought under the following sections:

  1. AA 1996, s 67—challenging the award for lack of substantive jurisdiction

  2. AA 1996, s 68—challenging the award for serious irregularity

  3. AA 1996, s 69—appeal of the award on a point of law

In each case, it is vital to be aware that there is, generally speaking, a 28-day time limit to bring the challenge or appeal before the court (AA 1996, s 70(3)). This very short timetable is said to reflect the principles of speed and finality of arbitration which are reflected in the overall ethos of AA 1996. As such, it is important to act quickly when considering whether to challenge or appeal an award, and to issue any arbitration claim within the time limits set out in the Act.

The important 28-day period runs from either:

  1. the date of the award, or

  2. if there has been any