ICC rules refers to the rules of the International Chamber of Commerce. The said rules shall only be applied if there is an arbitration agreement including that the rules of the said center shall be applied if any dispute may be arisen out of certain agreement.

As per article 4 (1) of ICC rules" A party wishing to have recourse to arbitration under the Rules shall submit its Request for Arbitration to the Secretariat at any of the offices specified in the Internal Rules. The Secretariat shall notify the claimant and respondent of the receipt of the Request and the date of such receipt".

The secretariat, after receiving sufficient copies of the Request and the required filing fee, shall send a copy of the request for arbitration and the documents annexed thereto, which shall include the arbitration agreement, to the respondent in order to receive his answer.

As per article 5 (1) of ICC rules the respondent shall submit his answer to request for arbitration within 30 days starting from the date of receiving the request.

The same article stipulated that the answer shall include the name, address, and contact details of the parties and their representative. The answer shall also include the respondents' comments to the circumstances of the dispute claims arisen by the claimant and it shall include his observation and proposals concerning number of arbitrators, the place of the arbitration, the governing law and the language of arbitration and he can also nominate his arbitrator if he wishes.

In practical, the respondent may need some time to appoint a lawyer or to prepare his answer, hence ICC rules authorized the secretariat, as per article 5 (2) to grant the respondent an extension of time for submitting the Answer. To avoid the respondent circumvention and to shorten the judication period, ICC rules states that "the application for such an extension contains the respondent's observations or proposals concerning the number of arbitrators and their choice and, where required by Articles 12 and 13, the nomination of an arbitrator. If the respondent fails to do so, the Court shall proceed in accordance with the Rules".

The respondent shall make sure to submit number of copies sufficient to provide one copy for each party, plus one for each arbitrator, and one for the Secretariat. A copy of any notification or communication from the arbitral tribunal to the parties shall be sent to the Secretariat" which means that

An illustration example: If we have only two claimants and sole arbitrator, then the claimant shall submit four copies, I.e. two copies for the two claimants, one copy for the sole arbitrator and one copy for the secretariat.

It is worth noting that in some instances, the respondent has many claims against the claimant, hence to avoid filing two cases for the same dispute, article 5 (5) states that "Any counterclaims made by the respondent shall be submitted with the Answer", therefore, the respondent shall submit his counterclaim within 30 days starting from the date of receiving the request for arbitration from the Secretariat.

Under article no. 5 (6) of ICC rules, the claimant shall reply to the counterclaim within 30 days taking into consideration the right of time extension based on the equality of the parties' principles.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.