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
    COSTA RICA 1

    An ICC arbitral tribunal in Panama City had heard a dispute concerning alleged breaches of a contract for the construction and exploitation of a hydroelectric plant. By a partial award, the tribunal had first found that it had jurisdiction over Saret de Costa Rica, a nonsignatory to the contract, because all the conditions for extending the arbitration agreement to a nonsignatory were complied with in this case. By a final award, the tribunal had then found in favour of Hidroeléctrica San Lorenzo, granting damages and interest. The Costa Rican Supreme Court granted recognition and enforcement of the Panama award, reasoning inter alia that the contention that Saret de Costa Rica was not a party to the arbitration clause and had never consented to it had been already examined and decided by the arbitrators and could not be revisited. 

    Corte Suprema de Justicia, 28 January 2021, No. 00160 - 2021

    (Hidroeléctrica San Lorenzo S.A. v. Saret de Costa Rica S.A.

    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
  • Excerpt Topics
    COSTA RICA 19 December 2019 Del Monte Internacional

    INPROTSA relied on both Costa Rican law and the New York Convention to oppose exequatur of an ICC award rendered in the United States. The Supreme Court dismissed all objections, finding that the award had been duly authenticated by the ICC, and that there had been neither a violation of due process nor an excess of authority or incongruency on the part of the arbitrators. The Court noted that, in fact, INPROTSA was seeking an impermissible review of the arbitral decision. The argument that exequatur would violate public policy also failed, as the Court found that none of the alleged violations constituted a violation of a fundamental principle of Costa Rican law. While punitive damages were indeed not allowed in Costa Rica, the Court found that the damages awarded by the ICC tribunal in the case at issue were not punitive. 

    Corte Suprema de Justicia, First Chamber, 19 December 2019, No. 04655 - 2019

    (Del Monte Internacional GmbH v. Inversiones y Procesadora Tropical Sociedad Anónima (INPROTSA))

    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
    404

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

    Authentication and certification
    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
    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
    524

    Public policy: The court discusses the effect of other alleged violations of public policy on the recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award, such as contradictory reasons, manifest disregard of the law (US), etc.

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