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Results: 4 Answers
International Arbitration
8.
The tribunal
8.1
How is the tribunal appointed?
 
Greece
According to Law 2735/1999, which incorporates the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, an arbitral tribunal will comprise three arbitrators, unless the parties have decided otherwise. More specifically, each party will appoint one arbitrator and these two arbitrators will appoint the third arbitrator and chair of the arbitration tribunal.

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.2
Are there any requirements as to the number or qualification of arbitrators in your jurisdiction?
 
Greece
According to Law 2735/1999, an arbitral tribunal will comprise three arbitrators, unless the parties have decided otherwise. Moreover, pursuant to the relevant provisions of the Greek Code of Civil Procedure, the arbitrators must have full contractual capacity and must not be deprived of their civil rights. Further requirements established by the code with regard to the appointment of members of the Greek judiciary as arbitrators are as follows:

  • Such persons can be appointed as a sole arbitrator or chair of the arbitration tribunal; and
  • Such persons must have completed at least five years’ service.
For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.3
Can an arbitrator be challenged in your jurisdiction? If so, on what basis? Are there any restrictions on the challenge of an arbitrator?
 
Greece
This depends on the nature of the arbitration.

More specifically, in international commercial arbitration, an arbitrator can be challenged either:

  • in circumstances that give rise to justifiable doubts as to his or her impartiality or independence; or
  • if he or she fails to meet the requirements agreed on by the parties through the arbitration clause.

An arbitrator may challenged by a party which appointed him or her or participated in his or her appointment only for reasons which came to that party’s attention after the appointment.

Law 2735/1999 provides that the parties can agree on the process for the challenge and removal of arbitrators. If there is no such agreement, either party can file a request for the removal of an arbitrator with the tribunal within 15 days of the date on which it was notified of the tribunal’s constitution or learned of any fact giving rise to the request for removal. If the removal is contested by the other party or by the arbitrator, the tribunal will decide on the request within 30 days of its filing. The party that filed the request can challenge the tribunal’s decision, or the lack of a decision if 30 days have passed, before the court of first instance, whose decision is final and non-appealable (Articles 6, 12 and 13 of Law 2735/1999).

Furthermore, an arbitrator who cannot perform his or her duties due to physical or legal incapacity, or who otherwise fails to fulfil his or her functions within a reasonable period, can be disqualified by agreement of the parties or decision of the court of first instance (Article 14 of Law 2735/1999).

In domestic arbitration, the Greek Code of Civil Procedure applies. Any member of the tribunal can be revoked by agreement of both parties to the proceedings. Moreover, any member of the tribunal can be challenged if he or she does not fulfil the requirements set out by law (Articles 52 and 871 of the code). If the party challenging the appointment made or participated in the arbitrator’s appointment, the challenge may be brought only on grounds which came to that party’s attention after the appointment.

The motion to challenge an arbitrator is filed with the court of first instance, whose decision is final and non-appealable.

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.4
If a challenge is successful, how is the arbitrator replaced?
 
Greece
Under Law 2735/1999, a new arbitrator will be appointed by the same party that appointed his or her predecessor, in accordance with the applicable rules set out in the arbitration clause, or if there are no such rules, by intervention of the court of first instance.

The reasons for the replacement of an arbitrator are as follows:

  • agreement of the parties;
  • decision of the court of first instance.
  • decision of the tribunal regarding a request for the arbitrator’s removal; and
  • resignation.
For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.5
What duties are imposed on arbitrators? Are these all imposed by legislation?
 
Greece
Arbitrators must be impartial, in accordance with the principles of equal treatment of the parties and due process. They must also perform their duties in good faith, observe due diligence and render the award in compliance with the formal requirements provided by law and their commitment to issue a decision in the dispute.

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.6
What powers does an arbitrator have in relation to: (a) procedure, including evidence; (b) interim relief; (c) parties which do not comply with its orders; (d) issuing partial final awards; (e) the remedies it can grant in a final award and (f) interest?
 
Greece
(a) procedure, including evidence?

Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the tribunal will freely determine the evidentiary procedure, which in practice is usually based on applicable general provisions on evidence before the state courts (in domestic arbitration) or on specialised sets of rules (in international arbitration). It is prohibited for parties to testify as witnesses. Experts are appointed by the tribunal. Otherwise, all forms and means of evidence listed in the Greek Code of Civil Procedure are also available in arbitration under the terms set out in the relevant provisions. In international arbitration, the default rules provide that the tribunal shall determine the admissibility, relevance, materiality and weight of any evidence.

(b) interim relief?

Pursuant to the – controversial and much criticised – provisions of Articles 685 and 889 of the Greek Code of Civil Procedure, the tribunal lacks the power to order or amend interim measures in domestic arbitration. This power belongs to the state courts, either before or after the commencement of arbitration.

The state courts also have the power to order interim measures in international arbitration, either before or after the commencement of arbitration; but this power is concurrent with the tribunal’s power to order interim measures.

(c) parties which do not comply with its orders?

In domestic arbitration the tribunal does not have the power to sanction non-compliance with its orders. However, in international arbitration any such behaviour can be indirectly sanctioned by taking it into account when allocating the costs.

(d) issuing partial final awards?

Greek arbitration law does not classify awards.

(e) the remedies it can grant in a final award?

Arbitral tribunals seated in Greece can provide the range of remedies as determined in the applicable substantive law. If the applicable substantive law is that of another state, tribunals seated in Greece may not grant remedies which violate principles of Greek public policy as defined in Article 33 of the Greek Civil Code. In such case the remedy granted may be annulled by the state courts.

(f) interest?

Whether interest can be awarded and at what rate are issues determined by the applicable substantive law and the underlying contract, as long as it does not exceed the mandatory maximum provided by Greek law.

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.7
How may a tribunal seated in your jurisdiction proceed if a party does not participate in the arbitration?
 
Greece
Should a respondent which has been duly notified under the applicable provisions refuse or unjustifiably fail to participate in an international commercial arbitration, the proceedings continue ex parte (Article 25 of Law 2735/1999). The parties can agree otherwise.

A party’s absence from the proceedings is not interpreted as a silent admission or denial of the claims. Each party still bears the burden of proving its allegations before the tribunal.

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP
8.8
Are arbitrators immune from liability?
 
Greece
With regard to civil liability, the liability of arbitrators is limited to gross negligence and intentional acts (Article 881 of the Greek Code of Civil Procedure). An arbitrator may also face criminal liability for bribery (Article 237 of the Greek Penal Code).

For more information about this answer please contact: Manolis Perakis from Dracopoulos & Vassalakis LP