Answer ... (a) Procedure, including evidence?
Subject to the right of the parties to agree to any matter, the arbitral tribunal shall decide all procedural and evidential matters (Section 34). These matters include:
- when and where any part of the proceedings is to be held;
- the language or languages to be used;
- whether written statements are required and if so, in what form;
- which documents or classes of documents should be disclosed between the parties (if any);
- whether strict rules of evidence should apply regarding the admissibility and relevance of material presented, and the time, manner and form in which such material should be exchanged;
- whether the tribunal should take the initiative in ascertaining the facts and the law; and
- whether there should be oral or written evidence or submissions (Section 34(2)).
(b) Interim relief?
Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the tribunal has the power to grant certain interim measures, including security for costs and measures to preserve evidence (Sections 38 and 39). The parties may also agree to give further powers to the tribunal to grant interim measures, either in the arbitration agreement or by reference to institutional arbitration rules which themselves provide such powers.
The court can grant interim measures in support of arbitration, including in relation to the taking of witness evidence, the preservation of evidence and the granting of interim injunctions (Section 44). However, the court can order interim measures only where the tribunal has no power (eg, where the tribunal has not yet been constituted or where the tribunal lacks the necessary power) or is unable to act effectively (Section 44(5)). In this context, there is some uncertainty as to the impact of emergency and expedited provisions in institutional rules on the ability of the English court to order interim measures. In Gerald Metals SA v Timis  EWHC 2327 (Ch), the English court held that where there is sufficient time for an applicant to obtain relief from an expedited tribunal or emergency arbitrator under the rules, the court has no power to grant urgent relief.
Otherwise, the court may grant ex parte relief where the matter is urgent. In the absence of urgency, the court will require the permission of the tribunal or the written consent of the parties (Sections 44(3) and (4)).
(c) Parties which do not comply with its orders?
If a party fails to comply with any order or directions of the tribunal and cannot show sufficient cause, the tribunal may make a “peremptory order” to the same effect, prescribing an appropriate time limit for compliance, such as the tribunal considers appropriate (Section 41(5)).
If a claimant fails to comply with a peremptory order to provide security for costs, the tribunal may make an award dismissing its claim (Section 41(6)). Otherwise, if a party fails to comply with any other kind of peremptory order, tthe tribunal may:
- direct that the party in default shall not be entitled to rely upon any relevant allegation or material;
- draw adverse inferences from the act of non-compliance;
- proceed to an award based on such materials as have been properly provided to it; and/ or
- make such order as it thinks fit as to the payment of costs of the arbitration incurred in consequence of the non-compliance (Section 41(7)).
Further, unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the court may make an order requiring a party to comply with a peremptory order made by the tribunal, but only where the applicant has exhausted any arbitral process available (Section 42).
(d) Issuing partial final awards?
Under Section 47 of the Arbitration Act, and unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the tribunal may make more than one award at different times and on different aspects of the case to be determined. The tribunal may, in particular, make an award relating to:
- an issue affecting the whole claim; or
- a part only of the claims or cross-claims submitted to it for decision.
(e) The remedies it can grant in a final award?
The parties are generally free to agree on the tribunal’s power to grant remedies (Section 48). Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, the tribunal has the same powers as the English High Court and the county court (Section 105(1)) to order:
- a party to do or refrain from doing anything;
- specific performance of a contract (other than a contract relating to land); or
- rectification, setting aside or cancellation of a deed or other document.
A tribunal does not have the power under English law to award punitive damages or to order imprisonment or the payment of fines.
Subject to the parties’ agreement, the tribunal may award simple or compound interest “from such dates, at such rates and with such rests” as it considers meets the justice of the case, both up to the date of the award and between the date of the award and of payment (Section 49).