Arbitration Without an Express Arbitration Clause

Arbitration Without an Express Arbitration Clause

Latham & Watkins review the English High Court’s 2018 decision in Sonact Group Limited v Premuda Spa [2018] EWHC 3820, where the court confirmed that an arbitral tribunal had jurisdiction over a dispute arising from an informal settlement agreement despite the fact that the agreement did not contain an arbitration clause and was no more than an informal routine arrangement to settle sums under the charterparty. The authors comments that the case highlights the English court’s pragmatic and pro-arbitration approach – on the facts, the court was willing to consider the wider industry context and practice in ascertaining the parties’ intentions and was unpersuaded by the fact that the settlement agreement did not contain an express arbitration clause. … READ MORE

Various firms have reviewed this decision. See:

The case serves as a reminder to practitioners drafting settlement agreements that the safest approach is for parties to include express terms on dispute resolution and governing law in settlement agreements in order to avoid costly and time consuming disputes on jurisdiction.

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 Hong Kong 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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