The object of Arbitration is to obtain a fair resolution of a dispute, by an impartial person, without unnecessary delay or expense. It can only be applied when a written agreement exists between parties that contains a clause to the effect that any disagreement can be referred to an Arbitrator. Most partnership, shareholder and sale of business agreements include this kind of clause.
Arbitration permits the parties to opt out of the conventional legal process and in its place elect that their dispute be settled by an independent third party who has relevant technical expertise and experience of the arbitration process. Once appointed, the Arbitrator is free to decide the most effective way to receive the arguments and evidence from both sides and has a duty to act fairly. Some arbitrations will involve hearings with all parties present and some will be settled by documents alone. The eventual decision of the Arbitrator is binding upon the parties.
The use of the arbitration process allows the parties to appoint an arbitrator with appropriate technical expertise and is likely to see the dispute conducted more speedily and at less cost than the reliance on the court process.
I am a Member of The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and have acted as Arbitrator on a wide range of disputes including partnership disputes, shareholder disputes and disputes over the final accounts of businesses which have been sold.
If you would like me to act please contact me and let me know the names of the parties involved. I will then check that I have had no involvement with the parties or their advisers which would bring my independence into question.
BUNKER & CO.