Arbitration as an effective form of redress

Łukasz Wydra, PhD

Arbitration (arbitration) court is often considered a “private court” or “alternative” to a state court. To submit a dispute to an arbitral tribunal (award), the parties enter into an arbitration agreement (arbitration clause, arbitration clause), based on which either existing (compromise clause) or future disputes can be resolved. Polish law provides for a very wide range of cases that can be resolved in arbitration.

As a rule, we are talking about any disputes over property rights (with the exception of alimony cases), or over non-property rights, if it can be the subject of a court settlement. It is therefore worth checking how the legal nature of a given claim is evaluated in the literature or case law.

There are several types (forms) of arbitration. The parties have the option of choosing a permanent arbitration court. In Poland, dozens of institutions provide such services, including:

  • Court of Arbitration at the National Chamber of Commerce in Warsaw,
  • Court of Arbitration at the Confederation of Lewiatan in Warsaw,
  • Industry Arbitration Court at the Polish Bank Association in Warsaw,
  • or the Court of Arbitration at the General Prosecutor’s Office of the State Treasury in Warsaw.

There are also permanent arbitration courts that operate locally, such as the Court of Arbitration at the Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Krakow. Interested parties may also appoint an ad hoc” arbitration court with the power to resolve the dispute( ad hoc arbitration). A permanent arbitral tribunal may also agree to administer ad hoc arbitration, providing logistical and interpersonal support(administered arbitration).

Arbitration proceedings are used to obtain an award, resolving the dispute on the merits. It is also possible to conclude a settlement before an arbitral tribunal. Recognition or declaration of enforceability of an arbitral award before a competent state court equates the arbitral award in effect with a state court judgment. The losing party in a dispute can also voluntarily execute the arbitration, without the winning party having to declare it enforceable. In turn, a party dissatisfied with the arbitration award may challenge the award with a special complaint in state court. The state court can only set aside the arbitration award, or uphold it by dismissing the complaint.

The use of arbitration courts has a number of advantages. Among the most commonly cited are: shorter duration of the proceedings (arbitration is, as a rule, single-instance; however, the parties may agree otherwise), reduced formalism, confidentiality, and the ability to freely choose the applicable substantive law. In principle, the parties have an unlimited choice of: arbitration court, arbitrators, rules of procedure. Arbitration can also be a cheaper solution than a dispute in state court, given the shorter duration of the proceedings. Other advantages of arbitration are that arbitrators can be given a deadline to make an award, the dispute is decided by experts in the field (arbitrators do not necessarily have to be lawyers), and the dispute is conducted using technological conveniences (remote hearings are standard, as are written testimony/testimony of witnesses). Ultimately, arbitration promotes the preservation of trade relations and faster resolution of disputes between disputants.

It should be noted that the average length of proceedings in arbitration ranges from 6 to 12 months. Litigation in state court is much longer (currently, on average, business proceedings take 24 months, although this is a gross oversimplification). Jabłoński Kozminski Law Firm has experience in proceedings before domestic and foreign arbitration courts. We also have experience in cases involving the recognition, declaration of enforceability of arbitral awards, or proceedings on a complaint to set aside an arbitral award.


dr Łukasz Wydra
ADVOCATE, PARTNER+48 22 416 60

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