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Is Reversing an Arbitration Award Going to Become Easier in the Future?[i]

Date: May 10, 2017  /  Author: John P. Ahlers  /  Categories: Claims, Rants and Raves, Construction News and Notes, Contracting, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)  /  Keywords: Is Reversing an Arbitration Award Going to Become Easier in the Future? 1  /  Comments (0)

Generally, contractors choose arbitration because it is a cost-effective method of dispute resolution, and primarily because an award issued in arbitration is final.  Vacating an arbitration award is only permitted on very narrow grounds.  A party must demonstrate that the award was procured by corruption, fraud, or undue means, or that an arbitrator exceeded his/her power (very high burdens).  Arbitration rules in other states are similar to the Washington statute.  Stated simply, it is very difficult to reverse an arbitration award—or is it?  These two cases do not indicate a trend but do remind us that an arbitrator’s power is limited to that power granted to him/her by contract.