•    Analysis and insight provided on more than 10 years and 500+ arbitration-related cases
•    Empirical evidence demonstrates English courts remain highly supportive of domestic and international arbitration

International legal practice Osborne Clarke has today published a one-of-a-kind extensive survey of over 500 arbitration-related cases in the English courts between 2010 and 2020. The report, "Arbitration in Court: Observations on over a decade of arbitration-related cases in the English courts", with a foreword highlighting some key observations by Sir Bernard Eder, offers a rare insight into English arbitrations.  

Arbitration-friendly English courts

The analysis confirms the general arbitration-friendly approach of the English judiciary. The report breaks down cases in relation to each section of the Arbitration Act 1996 to which they apply. Overall, the number of arbitration-related cases heard by the English courts has remained fairly consistent and followed a downward trend, with only challenges and appeals seeing an increase over the last decade. 
The detailed breakdown reveals that there is a clear trend for English courts to uphold awards and lend support to the arbitral process. The report draws some interesting conclusions: for example, that appeals or challenges based on more than one section of the Act are less likely to succeed overall.

Patterns of usage  

The report allows a rare insight into the type of arbitrations which are seated in London and/or which come before the English courts. Such details are usually hidden given the confidential nature of arbitration, but these have been made public as a result of the court process. It provides a snapshot of what seems to have been taking place in English arbitration over the last decade or more, including details of:

  • which industries seem to be using English arbitration the most;
  • the most popular arbitral institutional rules used in English arbitration;
  • the amounts involved in disputes and how these break down in disputes administered by different institutions;
  • the most common nationalities of parties using English arbitration; and
  • the most usual time period between award and judgment (and how this breaks down in relation to different sections of the Act).

The report also includes a look how arbitration might be affected in future by two recent decisions of the UK Supreme Court and includes a useful flowchart of the steps to be considered when seeking leave to appeal from the English courts.

The Arbitration in Court report has been researched and written by Artem Doudko, Partner and Head of Russia & CIS Disputes in Osborne Clarke's Dispute Resolution Practice at Osborne Clarke's, supported by Associate Director Daniel Harrison and Head of Disputes and Risk Knowledge in the UK  Michelle Radom
Artem said: "With the potential Law Commission-led reform and the 25th anniversary of the Arbitration Act 1996, it's a pivotal time for the arbitration sector. London has long been the preferred seat for both domestic and international arbitration and our research shows that's the case for good reason." 

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