The Effect of Noncompliance with the Contractual Time Limits for Resorting to Arbitration

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The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
Disputes may arise from any contractual relationship, and it is the duty of the legislator to create a suitable legal framework to ensure that such disputes are resolved in a fair and effective manner. Nowadays, most international and domestic disputes are resolved using arbitration instead of the traditional judicial system, which forced many jurisdictions to adopt laws and acts to administrate the arbitrations thereby. Opting to arbitration as a final recourse to resolve disputes is an irreversible choice, where the contracting parties are expecting that the state laws or acts will respect their agreement by enforcing its end result, arbitral awards, and facilitating its formation. The UAE has adopted a new Arbitration Law in 2018 in an endeavour to promote the UAE as the regional arbitration hub, wherein a significant enhancement has been made to the old arbitration laws. Despite the fact that the UAE law has gone a long distance to keep up with the international position on arbitration laws, yet there are matters that need to be improved further. One of these matters is the effect of not abiding with the contractual time-limit to commence arbitration. The UAE laws are unclear in respect of contractual time-limits and the consequences of not following such limits. In addition to that, the UAE courts seem to be reluctant to raise any consequences for not abiding of the time-limits thereof, which is adversely affecting the goal of promoting UAE as an arbitration hub. In pursuit of a better understanding of the UAE position on time limit clauses, the relevant provisions of the law have been analysed in conjunction with legal and judicial interpretations; and case studies have been scrutinized in detail. Also, a comparison has been made with other international laws to establish their standing on the subject matter and as a reference for enhancement.
time limits, arbitration, time bars, United Arab Emirates (UAE), UAE laws, law