RULES FOR ARBITRATION
(unless the parties have special agreements that may also apply)
1. Definition of Arbitration. Arbitration is a process under which an impartial person, the arbitrator, hears and reviews the evidence presented at the hearing to arrive at an award that may be binding or non-binding depending upon the agreement of the parties.
2. Agreement of Parties. Whenever the parties have agreed to arbitration they shall be deemed to have agreed to these rules, as amended and in effect as of the date of the submission of the claim, as part of their agreement to arbitrate.
3. Consent to Arbitrator. The parties consent to the appointment of the individual named as arbitrator in their case or the court may appoint him or her. The Arbitrator shall not act as an advocate for any party .Any personal contact or knowledge of any party, representative, witness or the claim to be arbitrated will be disclosed by the mediator to the parties or their council or representative prior to the beginning of the process and during the process if new parties or witnesses are added.
4. Conditions Precedent to Serving as Arbitrator. The Arbitrator shall not serve as an arbitrator in any dispute in which he has any financial or personal interest in the result of the arbitration. Prior to accepting an appointment, the Mediator shall disclose any circumstance likely to create a presumption of bias or prevent a prompt meeting with the parties. In the event the parties disagree as to whether the Arbitrator shall serve, the Arbitrator shall not serve.
5. Authority of Arbitrator. The Arbitrator does have the authority to decide any issue for the parties, as per the party’s agreement to arbitrate .The party’s agreement to arbitrate should state whether the arbitration will be Binding or Non- Binding.
7. No EX Parte Contact. AFTER THE PARTIES AGREE TO ARBITRATE NO CONTACT OR CONVERSATION SHALL BE PERMITTED BETWEEN THE ARBITRATOR AND ANY PARTY OR ITS REPRESENTATIVE. ANY CORRESPONDENCE SHALL BE PROVIDED THE OPPOSING PARTY OR THEIR REPRESENTATIVE AND THE ARBITRATOR INCLUDING THE STATEMENT OF CLAIM, WITNESS LISTS AND REQUEST TO CHANGE HEARING DATES AND ANY PRE HEARING REQUEST CONCERNING DOCUMENTS OR EVIDENCE TO BE OBTAINED OR DISCOVERED FROM A PARTY.
8. Authority of Representatives. PARTY REPRESENTATIVES OTHER THAN ATTORNEYS MAY PRESENT THE EVIDENCE AND RESPONSES FOR THE PARTIES. The names and addresses of such person’s shall be communicated in writing to all parties and to the Arbitrator.
9. Times and Place of Arbitration. The Arbitrator shall fix the time of each arbitration session. The arbitration shall be held at the office of the Mediator, or any other convenient location agreeable to the parties. Additional fees may be charged if the arbitration is held out of the Arbitrator’s office.
10. Identification of Matters in Dispute. Prior to the first scheduled arbitration hearing each party shall provide the Arbitrator and all attorneys of record/representatives with an Claimant’s Information Sheet Response to Claim and Request for Binding /Non Binding Arbitration on the form provided by the Arbitration setting forth its position with regard to the issues that need to be resolved.
11. Privacy. Arbitration hearing sessions are private. The parties and their representatives may attend sessions. Other persons may attend only with the permission of the parties and with the consent of the Arbitrator
12. Confidentiality. The Arbitrator shall not divulge confidential information disclosed to an Arbitrator by the parties or by witnesses in the course of the arbitration. All records, reports or other documents received by an arbitrator while serving in that capacity shall be confidential. The Arbitrator shall not be compelled to divulge such records or to testify in regard to the arbitration in any adversary proceeding or judicial forum. Any party that violates this agreement shall pay all fees and attorneys’ fees Arbitrator and other parties, including reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred in opposing the efforts to compel testimony or records from the Arbitrator.
13. No Stenographic Record. There shall be no stenographic record of the arbitration process unless the parties agree to the cost of providing a court reporter, however, the arbitrator shall tape record the arbitration hearing for purposes of review in issuing the arbitration award.
14. No Service of Process at or near the site of the Arbitration Session. No subpoenas, summons, complaints, citations, writs or other process may be served upon any person at or near the site of any arbitration hearing session upon any person entering, attending or leaving the session.
15. Completion of Arbitration. The arbitration shall be completed after the hearing and issuance of the award. The Arbitrator may ask for additional information or briefing if he believes the information is necessary to write the award.
16. Exclusion of Liability. The arbitrator is not a necessary or proper party in judicial proceedings relating to the arbitration. Neither Arbitrator nor any law firm/ business employing Arbitrator shall be liable to any party for any act or omission in connection with any arbitration conducted under these rules.
17. Interpretations and Application of Rules. The Arbitrator shall interpret and apply these rules the arbitration will be conducted under the Texas Arbitration Act unless the parties agree otherwise in writing. The arbitrator will conduct a fair unbiased hearing providing all parties and their witnesses the opportunity to present their claim and defenses.
18. Fees and Expenses. The Arbitrator’s daily fee shall be agreed upon prior to arbitration hearing and shall be paid in advance of each hearing. The expenses of witnesses for either side shall be paid by the party producing such witnesses or as stated in the prior contract or agreement of the parties. All other expenses of the arbitration, including fees and expenses of the arbitrator and the expenses of any witness and the cost of any proofs or expert produced at the request of the party shall be borne by the party presenting the witness unless the parties agree otherwise.
19. Issuance of Award. The arbitrator will issue a summary award within 21 business days of the closing of evidence unless a request for an expedited written award is made prior to the hearing date or if the arbitrator prior to issuing the award requests additional briefing.