Core procedural standards in arbitration
Produced in partnership with Diarmuid Laffan of 4 New Square

The following Arbitration practice note produced in partnership with Diarmuid Laffan of 4 New Square provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Core procedural standards in arbitration
  • The law of the seat and lex arbitri
  • Checklist when considering the law of the seat
  • Arbitration rules and core procedural standards
  • Other relevant standards
  • Professional obligations
  • International rules and guidelines
  • Ethical norms
  • What options are open to parties if core procedural standards are not met?

Core procedural standards in arbitration

One of the key distinguishing features of arbitration, as compared with domestic civil litigation, is the parties’ considerable freedom of choice as regards the procedure through which their dispute is determined. There are, however, important and consequential limits to party autonomy in this respect.

The sources of these limitations are various. They are generally aimed at ensuring the minimum standards of fairness that are inherent in arbitration as a quasi-judicial process. Their importance lies in the fact that a defective arbitral procedure, whether it results from the parties’ conduct or that of the tribunal itself, risks various undesirable outcomes including challenges to the resulting award or to its enforcement.

In this latter regard, Article V(1)(b) of the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (1958) (the New York Convention) provides that enforcement of an award may be refused if: ‘The party against whom the award is invoked was not given proper notice of the appointment of the arbitrator or of the arbitration proceedings or was otherwise unable to present his case…’.

This Practice Note considers the principal sources of core procedural standards in arbitration and, specifically, the relevance of:

  1. the law of the seat and lex arbitri

  2. arbitral rules, and

  3. other standards

The law of the seat and lex arbitri

The parties to an arbitration agreement generally elect the law that will

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