Court Decisions

The court decisions available on this website interpret and apply the New York Convention. These court decisions are in most cases published in the Yearbook Commercial Arbitration since its Volume I (1976). 

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The court decisions available on this website interpret and apply the New York Convention.

  1. Most decisions are reported in the Yearbook Commercial Arbitration, published by ICCA since 1976, and are numbered as in the Yearbook (e.g., US no. 954).

  2. Other decisions are indicated by country, date, and a short name (e.g., UK 18 June 2020 Alexander Brothers).

Court decisions can be searched by country and by topic.

Court Decisions

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  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 8

    Japan 8. District Court, Yokohama, 25 August 1999

    506

    Invalidity of the arbitration agreement: The court discusses the law applicable to the validity of the arbitration agreement at the enforcement stage.

    Law applicable to the arbitration agreement
    511

    Due process: The court discusses various irregularities affecting due process, including letters not sent, names of arbitrators or experts not communicated, language of proceedings and communications, etc.

    "Otherwise unable to present his case"
    518

    Public policy: The court discusses the meaning of (international as compared to domestic) public policy, generally defined as the basic notions of morality and justice of the enforcement State.

    Paragraph 2 - Distinction domestic-international public policy
    704(B) Bilateral Treaties
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 6

    Japan 6. High Court, Tokyo, 30 May 1994

    201

    The court discusses whether the dispute falls within the wording of the arbitration agreement; and whether claims in tort fall within the scope of the agreement.

    Scope of arbitration agreement
    220

    The court discusses how to interpret the Convention’s requirement that the agreement is not null and void etc., as well as specific cases of invalidity: e.g., lack of consent (misrepresentation, duress, or fraud), vague wording of the arbitral clause; other terms of the contract contradict the intention to arbitrate, etc.

    "Null and void", etc.
    221

    The court discusses which law – lex fori, lex contractus, law of the State where the award will be made – applies specifically to determining whether an agreement to arbitrate is “null and void etc.“, and, by extension, which law applies to determining the validity of arbitration agreements.

    Law applicable to "Null and void", etc. (for formal validity and applicable law, see Art. II, ¶204)
    JAPAN 5

    Japan 5. High Court, Tokyo, 27 January 1994

    101

    The court discusses the determination and relevance of the place where the award was made (in a foreign State or another contracting State.

    Award made in the territory of another (Contracting) State (paragraphs 1 and 3 - first or "reciprocity" reservation)
    301

    The court discusses the principle that the procedure for the enforcement of awards under the Convention is governed by the lex fori, as well as procedural issues (such as the competent enforcement court) not falling under the specific cases of ¶¶ 302-307.

    Procedure for enforcement in general
    401

    The court discusses the general conditions the Convention imposes on a petitioner for seeking recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award – namely, the submission of the original arbitration agreement or arbitral award or a certified copy thereof – and examines in general whether these conditions were complied in the case at issue.

    Conditions to be fulfilled by petitioner in general
    403

    The court discusses issues relating to the requirement to supply the original arbitration agreement or a copy thereof to prove the prima facie validity of the arbitration agreement, as well as the application of more favorable municipal laws that do not provide for this requirement.

    Original or copy arbitration agreement
    404

    The court discusses issues relating to the manner of authentication and certification of the award and/or arbitration agreement.

    Authentication and certification
    405

    The court discusses issues relating to the moment when the documents that are required for seeking recognition and enforcement must be supplied, and whether any defect can be cured later in the enforcement proceeding.

    "At the time of application"
    406

    The court discusses issues relating to the requirements of the translation (translation by sworn translator, translation of entire award etc.) and whether a translation is necessary.

    Translation (paragraph 2)
    502

    The court discusses the principle that the merits of the award may not be reviewed and that the court may only carry out a limited review of the award to ascertain grounds for refusal.

    No re-examination of the merits of the arbitral award
    513 Ground d: Irregularity in the composition of the arbitral tribunal or arbitral procedure
    521

    Public policy: The court discusses the consequences of the apparent or actual bias of an arbitrator on the recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award.

    Lack of impartiality of arbitrator
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 7

    Japan 7. District Court, Okayama, Civil Section II, 14 July 1993

    101

    The court discusses the determination and relevance of the place where the award was made (in a foreign State or another contracting State.

    Award made in the territory of another (Contracting) State (paragraphs 1 and 3 - first or "reciprocity" reservation)
    306

    The court discusses the applicable period of limitation for seeking enforcement of an award.

    Period of limitation for enforcement
    704(B) Bilateral Treaties
    914

    The court discusses this general reciprocity clause, which was inserted in the Convention to remedy the absence in the commercial reservation (Art. I(3)) of a federal-state clause allowing Contracting States not to apply the Convention to awards made in a constituent state or province of a Contracting State which was not bound to apply the Convention.

    General reciprocity clause
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 4

    Japan 4. District Court, Kobe, 30 June 1987

    101

    The court discusses the determination and relevance of the place where the award was made (in a foreign State or another contracting State.

    Award made in the territory of another (Contracting) State (paragraphs 1 and 3 - first or "reciprocity" reservation)
    401

    The court discusses the general conditions the Convention imposes on a petitioner for seeking recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award – namely, the submission of the original arbitration agreement or arbitral award or a certified copy thereof – and examines in general whether these conditions were complied in the case at issue.

    Conditions to be fulfilled by petitioner in general
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 3

    Japan 3. District Court, Osaka, 22 April 1983

    401

    The court discusses the general conditions the Convention imposes on a petitioner for seeking recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award – namely, the submission of the original arbitration agreement or arbitral award or a certified copy thereof – and examines in general whether these conditions were complied in the case at issue.

    Conditions to be fulfilled by petitioner in general
    503

    The court discusses the burden of proof of the grounds for refusing enforcement under the Convention.

    Burden of proof on respondent
    509

    Due process: The court discusses what constitutes “proper notice” of the appointment of the arbitrators or of the arbitration proceedings.

    "Proper notice"
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 2

    Japan 2. District Court, Yokohama, 3 May 1980

    201

    The court discusses whether the dispute falls within the wording of the arbitration agreement; and whether claims in tort fall within the scope of the agreement.

    Scope of arbitration agreement
    213

    The court discusses the status of an arbitration agreement in a contract that was amended or renewed.

    Amendment or renewal
    217

    The court discusses the meaning and effect of the referral of the resolution of disputes to arbitration, including: who can ask for referral and when, whether a party has waived its right to request arbitration, the defense that there was no contract at all; whether there was a condition precedent to the commencement of arbitration (e.g. mediation), stay of proceedings v. compelling arbitration, and national procedural specificities such as remand and removal (US), effect of class action. etc.

    Referral to arbitration in general
    220

    The court discusses how to interpret the Convention’s requirement that the agreement is not null and void etc., as well as specific cases of invalidity: e.g., lack of consent (misrepresentation, duress, or fraud), vague wording of the arbitral clause; other terms of the contract contradict the intention to arbitrate, etc.

    "Null and void", etc.
    222

    The court discusses the principle of competence-competence, including whether the parties “intended to have arbitrability decided by an arbitrator”, and the separability of the arbitration agreement from the main contract.

    Arbitrator's competence and separability of the arbitration clause
    223

    The court discusses whether a certain dispute could be settled by arbitration, and the law applicable to that determination.

    Arbitrability (see also Art. V(2) sub ground a. "arbitrability", ¶519)
  • Excerpt Topics
    JAPAN 1

    Japan 1. Court of Appeal, Tokyo, Civil Section II, 14 March 1963

    101

    The court discusses the determination and relevance of the place where the award was made (in a foreign State or another contracting State.

    Award made in the territory of another (Contracting) State (paragraphs 1 and 3 - first or "reciprocity" reservation)
    520

    Public policy:The court discusses the consequences of the default of a party in the arbitration on the recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award against it.

    Ground b: Public policy - Default of party