The way in which arbitrators handle arbitration proceedings has a fundamental influence on their duration and cost.
Polish Arbitration Association has prepared an Arbitrator’s Pledge which reflects good practices in the management of arbitral proceedings. These are the minimum requirements to be met by the arbitrators to handle proceedings efficiently and effectively. The principles set out in this document do not prejudice further-reaching requirements that can arise from the rules of arbitration courts. This Pledge may be signed by anyone who is an arbitrator or intends to sit as an arbitrator.
The Arbitrator’s Pledge
on the Conduct of Arbitral Proceedings
Business people choose arbitration on the assumption that arbitral proceedings will be conducted in an expeditious and cost-effective manner. There are case management techniques for controlling time and cost that have been developed in arbitration practice. I declare that while acting as an arbitrator, I will comply with the following rules reflecting good arbitration practice. When I will act as one of the members of an arbitral tribunal I will also encourage other arbitrators to comply with these principles.
- Before I accept an appointment as an arbitrator I will make sure that I have sufficient time to conduct the arbitral proceeding in an efficient way.
- I will make efforts to prevent conflict of interest at any stage of the arbitral proceedings.
- I will consult with the parties the essential issues regarding the management of arbitral proceedings so that the proceedings be conducted properly, efficiently and in line with the legitimate expectations of the parties.
- I will start the proceedings with a case management conference unless the nature of the case renders a conference unnecessary.
- I will support the parties’ efforts to resolve the dispute amicably.
- After consulting the parties I will issue a procedural order number one, which will establish:
- the procedural timetable,
- the sequence of written submissions which the parties will file during the arbitral proceedings,
- time limits within which the parties may present new statements and evidence,
- the consequences of the parties’ failure to comply with these time limits,
- the rules on written communications which will provide that submissions and orders will be made in particular in an electronic form,
- means of establishing the facts of the case.
- I will strive to render a final award no later than 12 months after the case management conference.
- I will consistently adhere to the rules and time limits established in the procedural order number one and will deviate from them only for an important reason.
- I will notify the parties that an infringement of the procedural rules or dishonest tactics may result in the allocation of the costs of the arbitration regardless of the outcome of the case.
- I will familiarize myself with the parties’ submission as soon as they are submitted and I will discuss the submissions with the other members of the arbitral tribunal.
- If I am of the opinion that some of the parties’ claims are ready to be decided without further evidence I will consider issuing a partial award.
- I will conduct the arbitral proceedings minimizing their time and cost. In particular I will consider using written witness statements and reports prepared by experts appointed by the parties.
- After consulting the parties I will establish the precise timetable of a hearing. If the hearing requires more than one day I will make efforts to fix the hearing for consecutive days.
- I will adjourn the hearing only for important reasons.
- I will strive to render the award no later than two months after the hearing or two months after the day of the parties’ last written submissions.