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Violation of parties’ agreement on constitution of arbitral tribunal can be ground for challenge

24 January 2014

Authors: Nathalie Voser, Aileen Truttmann

In a French-language decision dated 13 November 2013, published on 13 December 2013, the Swiss Supreme Court clarified that the appointment of a sole arbitrator in violation of the parties' agreement to submit their dispute to a three-member panel constituted a ground to challenge the award.

However, it rejected an application to set aside the award because the respondent and his counsel, respectively, had implicitly agreed to the appointment of a sole arbitrator by their conduct. The Supreme Court reaffirmed the well-established principle that the parties have to object in time, failing which they can be barred from relying on the ground of improper constitution of the arbitral tribunal in a petition to set aside the award. (Decision 4A_282/2013.)

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Published in Practical Law Arbitration


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