The Swiss Supreme Court has refused to set aside an arbitral award rendered by a sole arbitrator under the Swiss Rules of Arbitration. It held that a party does not have the right to unilaterally dictate the procedure of the arbitral process and that a tribunal's denial of a request to bifurcate proceedings and issue a preliminary ruling on an issue does not deprive the requesting party of the right to be heard. The Supreme Court also confirmed that it is bound by the factual findings of the tribunal, including in relation to the procedure of the arbitration.
This decision should serve as a reminder to parties to elaborate their arguments in full and that they are not entitled to insist that arbitral tribunals relieve them of that burden by giving preliminary views or rendering preliminary awards narrowing the scope of the dispute. (Decision 4A_42/2016).
Published in Practical Law Arbitration