English Court Rejects Claim That Notice Of Arbitration In Foreign Language Is Not Proper

English Court rejects claim that notice of arbitration given in a foreign language is not proper notice

Herbert Smith Freehills review the 2017 English High Court decision in Oao v Magneco Metrel UK Ltd [2017] EWHC 2208 (Comm), where in a dispute between an English company and a Russian company, the Court refused to set aside an order enforcing a Russian arbitration award on the grounds that the English company had not been given notice of the arbitration or the appointment of arbitrators. The authors note that the English company claimed that a series of letters in Russian, informing it of the arbitration proceedings, did not constitute proper notice as they were not provided with an English translation, but the Court held that since the headings of the letters were in English and contained the English word “arbitration”, the English company ought to have known that the documents related to arbitration, and that the letters therefore constituted a valid notice.  

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About Phillip Rompotis

Phillip practices as a barrister and arbitrator in Hong Kong. He has over 25 years’ litigation and arbitration experience in commercial disputes relating to construction & engineering, financial services, joint venture & shareholders agreements, technology, trusts, property and landlord & tenant. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, the Singapore Institute of Arbitrators, the Malaysian Institute of Arbitrators, and a member of various lists/panels of arbitrators.

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