Answer ... According to Article 817 of the Code of Civil Procedure (CCP), any objection to the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal must be raised no later than the first procedural activity following the arbitrators’ acceptance of their appointment. In other words, there is no need to raise such objection at the time of appointment of the arbitrators.
Such objection must be raised in writing, expressly and unambiguously, either:
- in the first pleading to be filed after the arbitrators’ acceptance; or
- in the first hearing following the arbitrators’ acceptance, whichever is the earlier.
In case of failure to comply with the above time limit, the award cannot be challenged for lack of jurisdiction.
In case of objections grounded on facts which have arisen during the proceedings, the objection must be raised in the first defence after such fact has arisen.
Answer ... The tribunal can rule on its own jurisdiction. More precisely, Articles 817 and 819-ter of the CCP enshrine the so-called ‘competence-competence’ rule.
Pursuant to these provisions, the arbitrators are entitled to verify and rule on both their jurisdiction and the validity, scope and content of the arbitration agreement (Article 817 of the CCP). National courts must refrain from ascertaining the validity of the arbitration agreement pending arbitral proceedings (Article 819-ter of the CCP).
Answer ... As discussed under question 14, Articles 817 and 819-ter of the CCP enshrine the so-called ‘competence-competence’ rule. Therefore, when arbitral proceedings are pending, national courts cannot decide on the validity or effectiveness of the arbitration agreement, and therefore on the jurisdiction of the arbitral tribunal.