Posted in AI/Software/Platforms, Arbitration Law

Online dispute resolution and electronic hearings

ODR a general term to define several options, nowadays:

  • electronic lawsuit –> e.g. in China lawsuits can be triggered in a sort of cyber-space, where parties meet in video-conferences, transcription is done via sftware and anyone can join,
  • e-hearing –> done electronically via screen
  • online review bundle –> to allow documents to be shared electronically among lawers, judges and parties,
  • real-time transcript –> an transcript shared electronically online and accesible to anyone

Undoubtely, these can be nice power-ups to legal proceedings and are expected to be the norm in the future of arbitraiton, since if would give it back it faster and cheaper nature that separated it from ordinary tribunals.

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Posted in Arbitration Law

Will ruling denying recognition of Yukos bankruptcy affect setting aside of $50 billion UNCITRAL award?

Definitely one of the messiest legal cases I’ve ever read about.

Yukos was the biggest oil company in Russia, until it was declared benkrupt by an Arbitration Court in Moscow. Therefore, liquidation had been disposed under Russian Law and managed by Yukos Finance B.V. (incorporated in the Netherlands) which sold Yukos’ assets.

Later on (on 2014) the same Court decided to make use of the UNCITRAL (United Nations Commission on International Trade Law) and ocndemned the Russian Gvmt to a fine of $50b in damages to Yukos’ shareholder, based on the ECT (Energy Charter Treaty) for breach of Articles 10 (fair and equitable treatment of investors) and 13 (wrongful expropriation).

BUT

Russia hadn’t ratified the treaty, therefore it issues an objection,

BUT

the ECT provides for a provision application at Article 45 “to the extent that such provisional application is not inconsistent with its constitution, laws or regulations.”,

SO

The Arbitrational Court had to verify the compatibility of the ECT to the Russian Constitution,

BUT

This had to follow the piecemeal approach, aka to veruify consistency with each and every section of the Russian Constitution,

AND

The Hague District Court ruled for the incompability and, therefore, incompetence of the Arbitral Tribunal to this matter.

SO

Let’s stick to “ordinary” venues and law, the Dutch one (see Yukos Finance B.V.) which, declared the liquidation of Yukos contrary to Dutch Law and ultimately voided the setting aside of the arbitral award before the Hague Court of Appeal, thus rendering Russian Law the only applicable one.

BUT The bankruptcy may have violated Russian Public Law too, which, according to the Hague Court of Appeal, may lead to Arbitration and, eventually, to the same Hague Court’s competency.

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Posted in Arbitration Law, Consumer Law, Litigation, Privacy

Equifax Is Bashed for Forcing Arbitration on Consumers After Data Breach

Add insult to data breach.

123m clients of Equifax have lost their perosnal data, but luckily the company allows them to check whether their data has gone stolen.

Just check the box to agree on T&Cs that you would only sue them in arbitration and lose your rights to a class action.
The immediate correction allowed ocnsumer to opt out within 30 days from the agreement to the T&Cs.

All of this happened right before the 18th Sep, date by which the CFPB will enforce a law banning class action right waiver for consumers.

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Posted in Arbitration Law, Litigation

Dutch Commercial Court Act

The Netherlands as a growing-business country and The Netherlands as one of the first ones to set up comemrcial courts in English to serve multinationals.

What we know so far  is that:

  • the start date has been postponed – discussion in the lwoer chamber took place on 18th July 2017,
  • This new court will be lodged within the Amsterdam Court and the Dutch Commercial Court of Appeal,
  • The cassation procedure will be held in Dutch,
  • Staff will not be exclusively Dutch but composed of international experts able to master the English language,
  • Applicability of this Court will be subject to both parties agreeing to it while consumer-relate disputes won’t be accepted,

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Posted in Arbitration Law

NEW TAI RULES 2017 – WELCOME CHANGES FOR THE THAI ARBITRATION INSTITUTE

New update since 2003 with effect from 31/1/2017.

Novelties regard:

  • Art. 23 – Removal of right to challenge appointment of arbitrator in court,
  • Art. 14-15 – Sole arbitrator as default position,
  • Art. 39 – Power to grant interim measures,
  • Art. 4.4 – Service and filing by e-mail
  • Art. 29 – Timetable for the arbitration
  • Art. 13 – Power to consolidate proceedings

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Posted in Arbitration Law, Consumer Law

Important changes regarding consumer arbitration introduced

Poland: a law recently approved on 17th Jan 2017 intertwines Consumer Law and Arbitration.

Here, an arbitration agreement in a contract with a consumer is presumed to be an unfair contract term and it can only be concluded in writing after the dispute emerges. An additional requirement imposes the parties to acknowledge that they are aware of arbitration’s effects, in particular of the binding effect of the arbitral award or settlement after the state court enforces or recognises them

No exchange of means of communication that enables its content to be recorded is allowed.

You can find some considerations on which Arbitration agreements can harm consumer rights by browsing my previous post in the Arbitration section.

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