Bloomsbury International Arbitration Briefing: August Teaser

In Brief

Bridgehouse (Bradford (No.2) Ltd v BAE [2020] EWCA Civ 759 [England and Wales]

The Court of Appeal considered an appeal from the Chancery Division staying proceedings brought pursuant to section 1028(3) Companies Act 2006, alleging that the powers within that provision were not capable of being exercised by way of arbitration. The Court of Appeal revisited the ‘demanding’ public interest test under section 1(b) of the Arbitration Act 1996.

Mozambique v Credit Suisse International [2020] EWHC 1709 (Comm) [England and Wales]

Waksman J considered an application for a stay of proceedings by reference to the criteria outlined in Golden Ocean Group Ltd v Humpuss Intermoda Transportasi TBK Ltd & Anr (‘The Barito’) [2013] 2 Lloyd’s Rep 421. The application was made in circumstances where Swiss proceedings were afoot but were not ultimately to reach their end (following likely appeals) potentially until as late as 2023. In that context did Waksman J envisage that it was justified to stay the English proceedings?

MVV Environment Devonport Ltd v MV Nortrader [2020] EWHC 1371 (Comm) [England and Wales]

In a section 67 1996 Act challenge and on a re-hearing, HHJ Pelling QC determines the question of a tribunal’s jurisdiction. Complicated questions of actual and ostensible authority were considered by the court as it attempted to grapple with whether the arbitration agreement, pursuant to which the arbitral tribunal determined it had jurisdiction, had in fact been incorporated int eh relevant contract for carriage of goods.

In Focus

Uber Technologies Inc. & Ors v David Heller 2020 SCC 16 [Canada]

The Supreme Court of Canada was drawn into an interesting debate about the application of the doctrine of unconscionability to an arbitration agreement in the context of alleged inequality of bargaining power. The judges disagreed on the exact scope and application of the same, particularly in the light of the fact that: (a) the doctrine was not ordinarily applied to individual terms of the contract; and (b) the doctrine of severability of arbitration was an important principle which the court needed to uphold.

The Arbitration Briefing is part of the Bloomsbury Law Online Service. The full briefing is available here.

Written by Paul Fisher

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