Virtual/Remote Arbitration Hearings Part II – Pre-Hearing Preparation for the Virtual Arbitration Hearing

Q: How does the tribunal ensure that all the participants are familiar with the functions of the videoconferencing software?

A: Without a doubt, a great amount of time for preparation is required for virtual arbitral hearing.

First, the tribunal may make procedural orders, upon the agreement of the parties, on the following issues: (a) identifying which issues can be dealt with on “documents only” and which issues must be dealt with on virtual hearing; (b) issues of confidentiality for virtual hearing; (c) requirements of virtual caucus rooms for the tribunal members and each side in the case; (d) the minimum system specifications (such as document display, raise hand, mute, private chat functions etc.) and technical requirements for smooth connectivity, adequate visibility and lighting in each location; (e) the requirements of the equipment, such as computing devices, screens, webcams, headphones, microphones and internet capacity; (f) the preferred videoconferencing platform; (g) a list and the number of authorized participants and their time zones; (h) hearing procedure, especially the recording issue, the issue of witness and expert testimony (See Chandra v. CBC, 2015 ONSC 5385 and 9087-1195 Québec inc. (Développement Olicon) c. Syndicat de copropriété le Vénitien sur Rive2020 QCCS 1458); (i) the retainment of a single tribunal assistant or IT consultant to coach the participants on how to deal with the technical issues before and during the hearing; (j) the contingency measures to be implemented in case of technical failures; (k) timetable of the hearings; (l) how to make and deal with objections during the examination and cross-examination;

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Virtual/Remote Arbitration Hearings Part I – Definition and Application Scope of the Virtual Arbitration Hearing

“Grace is that turning point from feeling hopeless to becoming empowered.” – Deborah Brodie

COVID-19 is a public health crisis that is massively disrupting the pending dispute resolution proceedings and generating new disputes that may be more difficult to resolve due to the safety concerns and public health restrictions imposed by the governments. The arbitral institutions of different jurisdictions are taking practical measures to provide guidance and procedural tools to the parties, counsels and tribunals to mitigate the delays generated by the pandemic. It is acknowledged that the parties, counsels, tribunals and the institutions have shared common goal to make every effort to conduct the arbitration proceedings in a fair, expeditious and cost-effective manner. While the videoconference and the audioconference have been employed as a practical technological alternative in the resolution of trans-jurisdictional disputes for many years, more and more hearings for domestic disputes are being performed by videoconferencing these days due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there is no doubt that some practitioners and disputants insist on in-person hearings and that the virtual hearing is not always the most appropriate alternative in some specific circumstances.

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加拿大魁北克法院如何尊重和保护商事仲裁的保密性 – 以79411 USA Inc. v. Mondofix Inc. 案为例

本文将介绍加拿大魁北克法院对79411 USA Inc.v. Mondofix Inc.案的判决。该判决能让我们了解加拿大魁省民事诉讼法及其他相关法规对商事仲裁的保密性原则的规定以及加拿大魁省法院对商事仲裁的保密性进行司法保护的具体措施。

(一)案例简介

79411 USA Inc.(Fix Auto)和Mondofix Inc.(Mondofix)之间因许可协议的续约问题产生纠纷。当事人双方曾依据魁省法律以及加拿大商业仲裁中心商业仲裁规则(Canadian Commercial Arbitration Centre General Commercial Arbitration Rules)签订仲裁条款。因此,Fix Auto和Mondofix通过仲裁程序解决了纠纷。仲裁裁决认定当事人双方的许可协议将续约至2027年。

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Confidentiality of Consensual Arbitration in Quebec – WriteToLearn Notes

How does the Court respect and protect the confidentiality of arbitration proceedings and arbitral awards in Québec?

In the most recent decision, the Superior Court of Québec emphasizes that according to Art. 4 C.C.P., there is a legitimate PUBLIC POLICY INTEREST in preserving the confidentiality of anything said, written or done during the arbitration proceedings and the arbitral awards (79411 USA Inc. c. Mondofix Inc. 2020 QCCS1104 and Urbitral Notes). Such confidentiality could be considered as the “levure” of this flexible, efficient and autonomous alternative dispute resolution process which requires an open and creative approach to resolve the disputes. On the application for the homologation of the arbitral award on the dispute between Fix Auto and Mondofix, the Court not only homologates the Award but also orders that the Award be filed under seal and withdraws the exhibits from the Court Record.

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Une étude préliminaire sur la compétence du tribunal arbitral conventionnel au Québec

Comment la Cour se prononce-t-elle sur la compétence du tribunal arbitral conventionnel au Québec? How does the Court rule on the jurisdictional issues of the consensual arbitral tribunals in Québec?

D’abord, il importe de rappeler que c’est en vertu de l’art. 632 al. 3 C.p.c. que les tribunaux judiciaires peuvent intervenir À LA SUITE d’une décision arbitrale sur sa propre compétence. Alors, il est acquis que l’art. 529 et s. C.p.c. ne sont pas pertinents dans un contexte d’arbitrage conventionnel (Desputeaux v. Éditions Chouette (1987) inc.2003 CSC 17).

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A Preliminary Study of Ontario Arbitral Awards on Jurisdictional Issues

How do the courts react on the arbitral jurisdictional issues in Ontario?

The jurisdiction of a consensual arbitrator flows from the authority given by the parties to the agreement. According to the competence-competence principle, the arbitral tribunal possesses jurisdiction to decide the scope of disputes between the parties according to the common intention consolidated in the arbitration agreement signed by those parties who agree to be bound by the arbitral process.

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