RICS has developed new arbitration services for construction and engineering disputes in England and Wales. The purpose is to provide unrivalled customer services that meet the expectations of parties to arbitrations in terms of quality, standards and overall user experience.

The arbitration services are offered at two levels, depending on the value of the dispute: the Fast Track Arbitration Service for construction and engineering disputes where the value of the claim is £100,000.00 or less, and the Select Arbitration Service for construction and engineering disputes where the value of the claim exceeds £100,000.

The Fast Track Arbitration Service provides the parties with an alternative to the County Court and adjudication for the resolution of lower value disputes. In particular, it strives to achieve final and binding arbitration awards that are better value than County Courts judgments and are without the enforcement and other issues related to the temporary nature of adjudication decisions. Arbitrators appointed under the Fast Track Arbitration Service have a maximum hourly rate and a maximum number of hours for which they can charge. The parties’ recoverable costs are also capped.

The Select Arbitration Service provides a viable alternative to the Technology and Construction Court to determine high value, complex disputes. It is more cost effective than equivalent arbitration services provided by most international arbitration bodies, and it also aims to provide better value for money and be quicker than litigation.  Whilst arbitrators’ fees are not capped, arbitrators will be required to provide an estimate of fees at the outset and to update the estimate throughout the course of the arbitration as appropriate.

Underpinning the new arbitration regime is a panel of high quality arbitrators who are drawn from a variety of professions, including surveyors, lawyers, engineers and architects. All are regularly assessed to ensure they are up to date with the relevant law and practice, and able to discharge the role of arbitrator sensibly and without delay.

For more information please download the information paper below, alternatively you may be interested in attending our free launch event for the service, taking place in London on 4 November 2015.

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