One of the key issues that now awaits the decision of the U.K. Supreme Court in Jivraj v. Hashwani is whether there is a contract between the parties and the arbitrators, such that the arbitrators may be considered “employees” of the parties (and thereby subject to the law prohibiting discrimination by employers)? If there is…

It is interesting to see what can happen sometimes during an oral hearing for an arbitral proceeding. I have noted from my esteemed colleagues that they have witnessed a very interesting phenomenon – watch the arbitrators – can you tell who appointed whom? Should you be able to? Having worked for most of my career…

While Russia is a signatory to the New York Convention, there is a perception amongst some practitioners and arbitration users that Russia is not an arbitration friendly jurisdiction. This viewpoint is, no doubt, due to a perceived scepticism of the Russian courts and is the driving force behind many foreign investors doing business in Russia…

Should arbitrators be permitted to serve as mediators of the disputes they might ultimately determine? Instinctive reactions to this question are likely to be coloured by a party’s legal background and cultural expectations. To those from common law traditions, the idea of combining the roles of mediator and arbitrator is rather alien, whereas in civil…

In a landmark decision dated 29 October 2010, published on 19 November 2010 (case 4A_234/2010), the Swiss Federal Tribunal dismissed a motion to set aside a Court of Arbitration for Sport (“CAS”) award based on the alleged impartiality of one of the co-arbitrators. The Court firstly clarified that the independence and impartiality expected from any…

We have all seen it before. The same names, the same faces are chosen consistently to act as arbitrators. Is it bad? No, but it certainly occurs. The same names are respected, experienced professionals that undoubtedly anyone would be grateful to have serve as an arbitrator for their proceedings. However, are there downsides to always…

Everybody who has visited a certain number of arbitration conferences over the last few years has probably heard at least an equal number of contributions relating to costs in arbitration. Similarly, the number of written articles on the topic in legal literature is enormous and entire books are based on the subject. Considering that cost…

Amongst the many issues raised by the now famous Tecnimont case, which we analyzed in our 19 May 2009 blog , was the relevance in setting aside proceedings of institutional rules relating to challenges. The ICC partial award had been quashed by a 12 February 2009 judgment of the Court of Appeal of Paris, because…

A major new survey on international arbitration conducted by Queen Mary University London and sponsored by White & Case revealed several interesting findings on corporate choices concerning international arbitration.* As already reported by Global Arbitration Review, the survey shows “the extent to which the governing law is a driver of choice among those framing arbitration…

A recent discussion on the OGEMID list about “elite arbitrators” prompted one participant to humorously compare the discussion to the frequent flier programs of airlines. This led to some fanciful speculation by in-house counsel of arbitration institutions offering their own loyalty programs, awarding us with “Frequent Arbitrating” points. For example, would there be free “upgrades”…

In a recent contribution to this list serve Alexis Mourre vigorously defended the parties’ right to appoint their own arbitrator. The appointment of an arbitrator is probably one of the single most important decisions during an arbitration. In so far it is not surprising that the right to appoint ones own arbitrator is regularly mentioned…

In his April 2010 inaugural lecture as holder of the Michael R. Klein’s Chair at the Miami University, Jan Paulsson advocated a fundamental change in the culture and practice of international commercial arbitration (Moral Hazard in International Arbitration, Miami, 29 April 2010, see also on this blog). In a nutshell, his views can be summarized…

In arbitration, as in other aspects of business life, parties often feel most comfortable when they are (literally) on familiar ground. If things go wrong, a European or American company might understandably prefer arbitration seated in Europe or New York. On the other hand, parties from the PRC, for example, are increasingly, and equally understandably,…

Can arbitrators be called to give testimony on the arbitral procedure before the court in charge of annulment or enforcement actions? Courts in England and Norway had to tackle this issue and have given a similar answer to this question: arbitrators can be asked to give testimony as to the elements of facts of the…

I recently spoke at a conference co-sponsored by the Milan Chamber of Arbitration and the ICC on the occasion of the publication of the new Italian arbitration treatise entitled Commentario Breve al Diritto Dell’Arbitrato Nazionale ed Internazionale (CEDAM 2010) by my colleague Massimo Benedettelli, along with co-authors Claudio Consolo and Luca Radicati di Brozolo. The…

When it comes time to identify an arbitrator candidate, be it in the investor-state context or in an international commercial arbitration, there are many factors to consider. One such factor, however, that has been the focus of much attention recently by arbitration institutions, practitioners and commentators alike, is arbitrator availability. It is clearly a sore…

In recent years, there has been increasing concern about court orders aimed at preventing a party from initiating, continuing or participating in arbitration proceedings (see notably, IAI Series on International Arbitration, no 2, Anti-Suit Injunction in International Arbitration, E. Gaillard ed., 2005; ICCA Congress Series, No 13 International Arbitration 2006, Back to Basics?, A. J….

I have always found the submission of expert legal opinions on matters of international law to investment treaty tribunals rather odd.  Why are expert opinions needed and what is their status?  To begin, the opinion is submitted to an international arbitration tribunal often comprising leading public international lawyers (and sometimes current or former judges of…

By Federico Campolieti* and Nicholas Lawn** Introduction In a recent decision related to the ICSID case Perenco Ecuador Limited v. The Republic of Ecuador [1], the Secretary-General of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague (“PCA”) has upheld a challenge against a leading arbitrator, Judge Charles N. Brower, on the basis that from the…

Handicapping investor-state arbitration cases is a tough business. Indeed, it’s difficult to predict when decisions will come down – much less what they will say. The following somewhat-hastily-cobbled-together list constitutes my best guess as to the 10 most notable awards which may come down in 2010. I won’t hazard a guess as to what’s in…

The 9.10.2009 session of the New York Convention subcommittee of the IBA in Madrid saw a lively discussion on the topic of enforcement of annulled arbitral awards. The discussion related to the “Yukos Capital” decision issued by the Amsterdam Court of Appeals in April 2009. The Amsterdam Court of First Instance had previously upheld the…

In 2006, I conducted a review of the most frequently selected arbitrators in the then-pending 103 ICSID cases. (See “Precedent in Investment Treaty Arbitration: A Citation Analysis of a Developing Jurisprudence” (2007), 24 J. Int’l Arb 129). My 2006 review of the 103 pending ICSID cases (ranging from cases registered in February 1997 to November…