Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019

Aug 13, 2019 | by Avantis RegTech Legal Research Team

The Ministry of Law and Justice on August 09, 2019, has published the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2019, to further amends the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996.

Some of the major amendments in the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, are as under:

Ø  Under Section 11 which specifies the procedure for Appointment of arbitrators:

a)      Sub-section 3A has been inserted, namely:

Sub-section 3A: Empowers the Supreme Court (SC) and the High Court (HC) to designate, arbitral institutions, from time to time, which have been graded by the Council. Further where no graded arbitral institution are available, then, the Chief Justice of the concerned High Court may maintain a panel of arbitrators for discharging the functions and duties of arbitral institution and any reference to the arbitrator shall be deemed to be an arbitral institution and the arbitrator appointed by a party shall be entitled to such fee at the rate as specified in the Fourth Schedule.

b)      Omission of Sub-section:

1)      Sub-section (6A) which says that the Supreme Court or, as the case may be, the High Court, while considering any application shall confine to the examination of the existence of an arbitration agreement;

2)      Sub-section (7) says that no appeal including Letters Patent Appeal shall lie against the decision of SC and HC;

3)      Sub-section 10 says that the SC or, as the case may be, the HC, may make such scheme as the said Court may deem appropriate for dealing with matters.

Ø  In section 17 (1) which specifies the Interim measures ordered by arbitral tribunal, the words and figures “or at any time after the making of the arbitral award but before it is enforced in accordance with section 36” has been omitted

Ø  In Section 23 which specifies the procedure for submissions of Statements of claim and defence, after sub-section (3), the following sub-section has been inserted, namely:

Sub-section (4): The statement of claim and defence under this section shall be completed within a period of six months from the date the arbitrator or all the arbitrators, as the case may be, received notice, in writing, of their appointment.

Ø  Insertion of Sections:

1)      Section 42A: Confidentiality of information: The arbitrator, the arbitral institution and the parties to the arbitration agreement shall maintain confidentiality of all arbitral proceedings except award where its disclosure is necessary for the purpose of implementation and enforcement of award.

2)      Section 42B: Protection of action taken in good faith: No suit or other legal proceedings shall lie against the arbitrator for anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done under this Act or the rules or regulations made thereunder.

3)      Section 87: Effect of arbitral and related court proceedings commenced prior to October 23, 2015

Ø  Part IA has been inserted: Arbitration Council of India.

Ø  Schedule eighth has been inserted: Qualifications and Experience of Arbitrator.

Ø  Section 26 of the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Act, 2015 has been omitted and shall be deemed to have been omitted with effect from October 23, 2015.

Save as otherwise provided in this Act, it shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint and different dates may be appointed for different provisions of this Act and any reference in any such provision to the commencement of this Act shall be construed as a reference to the coming into force of that provision.

[NO. 33 OF 2019]


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