US Court Blocks Enforcement Of Award Due To Effect Of The Terms Of Arbitration Agreement

US Court blocks enforcement of award due to effect of the terms of arbitration agreement

Herbert Smith Freehills reviews the decision of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in Diag Human S.E. v Czech Republic Ministry of Health, where the Court dismissed an application brought by Diag Human to enforce a 2008 arbitration award it obtained against the Czech Republic. The authors note that the decision rests on the implications of triggering a review process that the parties had agreed in their arbitration agreement and is illustrative of the importance in making sure that any bespoke review or appeal proceedings which are agreed by the parties are clear as to their effect on any award. Further, while a refusal to enforce a foreign award under the New York Convention often causes concern, this decision highlights the importance the Court placed on the terms of the parties’ arbitration agreement and is consistent with a respect for party autonomy and freedom of contract, as well as showing deference to the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal. 

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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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