Arbitration Rules

Last Modified: Mar 19, 2014

These Rules are similar to those offered by other arbitral institutions.

Table of Contents

R-1. Arbitration and Participants Subject to these Rules
R-2. Delegation of Duties
R-3. Appointment of a Judge
R-4. Number of Judges
R-5. Initiating an Arbitration
R-6. Changes of Claim
R-7. Jurisdiction
R-8. Privacy
R-9. Confidentiality
R-10. Disclosure
R-11. Disqualification of the Judge
R-12. Communication with the Judge
R-13. Vacancies
R-14. Exchange of Information
R-15. Attendance in the Virtual Room
R-16. Representation
R-17. Interpreters
R-18. Postponements
R-19. Arbitration in the Absence of a Party or Representative
R-20. Conduct of Proceedings
R-21. Evidence
R-22. Testimony
R-23. Laws Applicable
R-24. Closing of Hearing
R-25. Reopening of Hearing
R-26. Waiver of Rules
R-27. Extensions of Time
R-28. Serving of Notice and Documents
R-29. Time of Award
R-30. Form of Award
R-31. Scope of Award and Style of Arbitration
R-32. Settlement or Abandonment
R-33. Delivery of Award to Parties
R-34. Modification of Award
R-35. Applications to Court
R-36. Exclusion of Liability
R-37. Witness Expenses
R-38. Date and location of Award
R-39. Interpretation and Application of Rules
R-40. Electronic Signatures and Delivery
R-41. Language of Proceedings

R-1. Arbitration and Participants Subject to these Rules

Unless the parties to the dispute (the "Parties" or "Party") agree otherwise in writing, the Parties agree to make these rules of arbitration (the "Rules" or "Arbitration Rules") part of their arbitration agreement (the "Agreement") whenever they participate in the resolution of a dispute on eQuibbly.com or one of its subdomains (the "Site"). The Parties may only vary these Rules and the procedures set forth in these Rules if: the parties agree in writing; and eQuibbly approves of such changes in writing.

Arbitrators conducting arbitrations on the Site agree to be bound by these Rules.

R-2. Delegation of Duties

When the Parties agree to arbitrate under these Rules by participating in an arbitration on the Site, the Parties thereby authorize the assigned arbitrator (the "Judge" or "Arbitrator") to administer the arbitration in accordance with these Rules. The authority and duties of the Judge are established in these Rules.

R-3. Appointment of a Judge

eQuibbly will assign a Judge from its roster of arbitrators. A Party will be deemed to have accepted and agreed to the chosen Judge if the Party does not, within 1 day of being notified of the assignment, notify eQuibbly by email to the contrary.

R-4. Number of Judges

The the dispute will be heard and determined by one Judge.

R-5. Initiating an Arbitration

  1. A Party can initiate an arbitration (the "Plaintiff") under these Rules by going to the Site and clicking the appropriate button, providing all the information requested, and signing online the Agreement to arbitrate provided by eQuibbly.

  2. eQuibbly will notify the other Party (the "Defendant") of such filing using the email address provided by the Plaintiff.

  3. Unless the Parties state otherwise, all claims and counterclaims will be deemed to be denied by the other Party.

R-6. Changes of Claim

After submitting a dispute for arbitration and a proposed resolution, no new or different claim or counterclaim can be made in the arbitration hearing, unless the Judge allows it, but any clarifications or additional information can be provided during the hearing.

R-7. Jurisdiction

  1. The Judge has the power to rule on his or her own jurisdiction and on any challenge to his or her jurisdiction, including any objections with respect to the existence, scope or validity of the arbitration Agreement.

  2. The Judge will have the power to determine any question of fact, law, good faith, or dishonesty.

R-8. Privacy

The arbitration and related communications are private proceedings. Only the Parties and their representatives and the Judge may access the virtual arbitration room. Other persons, such as witnesses, may access the virtual room only with the written permission of both Parties or the Judge.

R-9. Confidentiality

  1. The Parties and their representatives, the Judge, and eQuibbly will keep confidential all arbitration Awards, and all documents and materials disclosed during the arbitration produced by the other Party that are not otherwise in the public domain, except to the extent that disclosure may be required by legal duty, to protect or pursue a legal right in relation to this arbitration, or to enforce an Award in legal proceedings before a court or other judicial authority;

  2. Except as required by law, The Parties and their representatives will maintain the confidentiality of the arbitration and the proceedings, and will not rely on, or introduce as evidence in any subsequent arbitral, judicial or other proceeding the following, unless for purposes of enforcing the Arbitral Award:

    a. Views expressed or suggestions made by a Party or other participant with respect to a possible settlement of the dispute,

    b. Admissions made by a Party or other participant in the course of the proceedings,

    c. Proposals made or views expressed by the Judge, or

    d. The fact that a Party had or had not indicated a willingness to accept a proposal for settlement.

  3. All information, records, reports or other documents disclosed during the arbitration will be held in confidence by the Judge and by eQuibbly and its representatives and will be used solely for the purposes of the arbitration and not for any other purpose.

  4. Neither the Judge nor eQuibbly or its representatives will divulge such records or testify in regard to the arbitration in any proceeding or judicial forum unless compelled to do so by law.

R-10. Disclosure

Any person appointed or to be appointed as a Judge will disclose to eQuibbly and the Parties any circumstance likely to give rise to justifiable doubt as to their impartiality or independence, including any bias or any financial or personal interest in the result of the arbitration or any past or present relationship with either of the Parties or their representatives. Such obligation will remain in effect throughout the arbitration.

R-11. Disqualification of the Judge

  1. The Judge will be impartial and independent and will perform his or her duties with diligence and in good faith, and will be subject to disqualification by eQuibbly for:

    a. Partiality or lack of independence;

    b. Inability or refusal to perform his or her duties with diligence and in good faith; or

    c. Any grounds for disqualification provided by applicable law.

  2. Upon the objection of a Party to the continued service of an Judge, or on its own initiative, eQuibbly will determine whether a Judge should be disqualified on the grounds specified in these Rules, and will inform the Parties of its decision. eQuibbly's decision will be conclusive.

R-12. Communication with the Judge

No Party and no one acting on behalf of any Party will communicate with a Judge or a candidate Judge concerning the arbitration without the other Party being part of such communication.

R-13. Vacancies

If for any reason Judge is unable to perform the duties of the position, eQuibbly may replace the Judge with another arbitrator from its roster in the same manner that the former Judge was appointed.

R-14. Exchange of Information

  1. At the request of a Party and at the discretion of the Judge, or at the sole discretion of the Judge, the Judge may demand and the Party will comply with:

    a. The production of relevant non-privileged documents and other information, and

    b. The identification of any witnesses to be relied upon by providing the name, address and telephone number of that witness.

  2. The Parties will, prior to the appointment of the Judge, upload to the Site all documents and exhibits and witness statements they intend to rely on during the arbitration so the other Party and the Judge can view them in detail.

  3. The Parties will, prior to the appointment of the Judge, disclose all material relevant facts of their case and the arguments they intend to rely on during the arbitration.

  4. Given the nature of online arbitrations, to limit the scope and cost of discovery, the Parties agree that discovery will be limited to the disclosure of documents that each side will present in support of its case, and non-privileged documents essential to a matter in the proceeding.

  5. The Judge is authorized to resolve any disputes concerning the exchange of information.

R-15. Attendance in the Virtual Room

It will be at the Judge's sole discretion to determine whether any person other than a Party and its representatives can participate in, or be present during, the arbitration.

R-16. Representation

Any Party may be represented by counsel or other authorized representative. A Party intending to be represented will notify the other Party and the Judge of the name, address, phone number and email of the representative as soon as possible.

R-17. Interpreters

Any Party wanting an interpreter will make all arrangements directly with the interpreter and will assume the costs of the service. A Party intending to use an interpreter will notify the other Party and the Judge as soon as possible.

R-18. Postponements

The Judge may postpone the hearing or any decision upon agreement of the Parties, upon request of a Party who can show good cause, or upon the Judge's own initiative.

R-19. Arbitration in the Absence of a Party or Representative

Unless the law provides to the contrary, the arbitration may proceed in the absence of any Party or representative who, after due notice, fails to be present or fails to obtain a postponement. An Award will not be made solely on the default of a Party. The Judge will require the Party who is present to submit such evidence as the Judge may require for the making of an Award.

R-20. Conduct of Proceedings

The Judge, exercising his or her discretion, will conduct the proceedings with a view to expediting the resolution of the dispute and may direct the Parties to focus their presentations on issues which could dispose of all or part of the claim. The Judge has the discretion to vary this procedure, provided the Parties are treated with equality and that the Parties are given a fair opportunity to present their respective cases.

If the Judge requires a hearing by teleconference or videoconference, it will proceed without a court reporter or transcript.

R-21. Evidence

  1. Conformity to legal rules of evidence is not required.

  2. The Parties will offer relevant and material evidence and will produce any evidence the Judge deems necessary.

  3. The Judge will take into account applicable principles of legal privilege, such as those involving the confidentiality of communications between a lawyer and client.

  4. The Judge will determine the admissibility, relevance, and materiality of the evidence offered and may exclude evidence he or she deems to be redundant or irrelevant.

  5. The Judge is authorized to subpoena documents and witnesses relevant to arbitrating the matters under dispute.

  6. Files uploaded to the Site cannot be edited or deleted after the Defendant has been invited to participate in the arbitration unless the arbitration is canceled before the Defendant provides a response.

  7. The Judge may receive and consider evidence, including witness statements, by written statement, video, or affidavit, but will give it only such weight as the Judge deems it is entitled to. The Judge has the discretion to admit all evidence that he or she believes is relevant and has probative value.

  8. The Judge has the authority to administer an oath or affirmation to the Parties and witnesses and other participants in the arbitration.

  9. Unless otherwise instructed by both Parties in writing and arranged in advance, any documents submitted by any Party will simultaneously be provided to the other Party by eQuibbly.

R-22. Testimony

The Judge may require that a Party or a witness swear an affirmation or oath before giving testimony, but even if the Judge does not require it, each of the Parties, by agreeing to these Rules, solemnly affirms that the evidence to be given by them will be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, and this affirmation has all the force and effect and consequence as if it were given in the presence of and at the direction of a court of law.

R-23. Laws Applicable

Decisions by the Judge should be based on U.S. or Canadian legal principles and what is fair and just given the circumstances and the facts surrounding the dispute, rather than the formal laws of any one state or province.

R-24. Closing of Hearings

At the end of a hearing the Judge may ask whether the Parties have any further evidence to offer. If the Judge is satisfied that the record is complete, the hearing will be considered closed.

R-25. Reopening of Hearing

The hearing may be reopened by the Judge any time before the Award is made.

R-26. Waiver of Rules

Any Party who proceeds with the arbitration after knowledge that a provision or requirement of these Rules has not been complied with and who fails to state an objection in writing prior to an Award being made will be deemed to have waived the right to object.

R-27. Extensions of Time

eQuibbly or the Arbitrator may for good cause extend any period of time established by these Rules. The Parties will be notified of any extension.

R-28. Serving of Notice and Documents

Any document, notice, or process necessary or proper for the initiation or continuation of an arbitration under these Rules, may be served on a Party by email addressed to the Party, or their representative at the last known email address provided to eQuibbly or the Judge by that Party, or by posting it on the Site in the Party's account or in their assigned virtual dispute room.

R-29. Time of Award

The Award will be made within fourteen days after the close of hearings, except in extenuating circumstances.

R-30. Form of Award

  1. Any Award will be in writing and signed by the Judge.

  2. Typing a name, or digitally or electronically signing a name, on or to a document will be equivalent to signing a document by hand in ink.

  3. The Judge need not provide a reason for an Award unless the Parties request this in writing prior to appointment of the Judge.

R-31. Scope of Award and Style of Arbitration

  1. The style of arbitration employed will be the style commonly known as "Baseball Arbitration" or "Final Offer Arbitration", where the Judge must choose to award one of the Parties' Proposed Resolutions. However, the Judge, in awarding one of the Proposed Resolutions, may at its sole discretion edit the form and terms of the chosen Proposed Resolution where it would clarify the Award, or where it would further the principles of equity and justice, but the intent of the Proposed Resolution will not be altered to any significant extent.

  2. The Judge may grant any remedy or relief proposed by the Parties, subject to the exceptions in the preceding paragraph, that the Judge deems just and equitable and within the scope of the original agreement of the Parties, including, but not limited to, specific performance of a contract.

  3. The Award may include:

    a. Interest at such rate and from such date as the Judge may deem appropriate as long as it is no greater than 12% per year; and

    b. The fees paid to eQuibbly for the arbitration.

  4. The Judge isnot empowered to award punitive damages, and each Party waives any right to seek or recover punitive damages with respect to any dispute resolved by this arbitration, unless otherwise agreed to in writing by the Parties.

R-32. Settlement or Abandonment

At any stage of the proceedings, the Parties may agree in writing to abandon the arbitration, or settle the matter on their own. If both Parties agree, the Judge may set forth the terms of the settlement in a consent award. In any event, the Parties will still be liable for any and all fees owed eQuibbly as agreed prior to the arbitration.

R-33. Delivery of Award to Parties

The Parties will accept as notice and delivery of the Award:

  1. An email with the Award attached or with a link to download the Award, addressed to the Party, or its representative at the last known email address provided to eQuibbly or the Judge by that Party; or

  2. The posting of the Award or a link to download the Award on the Site in the Party's account or their assigned virtual dispute room.

R-34. Modification of Award

Within 7 days after the delivery of the Award, any Party, upon notice to the other Party and eQuibbly, may request that the Judge correct any clerical, typographical, or computational errors in the Award. The Judge is not permitted to re-determine the merits of any claim already decided. The other Party will have 5 days to respond to the request. At the expiry of this time period, the Judge will decide whether there is a mistake and if so, make any corrections within 10 days.

R-35. Applications to Court

  1. A request to a judicial authority for interim measures will not be deemed incompatible with the Agreement to arbitrate or a waiver of the right to arbitrate.

  2. No judicial proceeding by a Party relating to the subject matter of the arbitration will be deemed a waiver of the Party’s right to arbitrate.

  3. The Parties to an arbitration under these Rules are deemed to have consented that judgment upon the Award may be entered in any court having jurisdiction thereof.

R-36. Exclusion of Liability

  1. The Parties agree that neither eQuibbly, its employees and officers and directors, nor any arbitrator or Judge in a proceeding is a necessary or proper party in judicial proceedings relating to any arbitration.

  2. The Parties agree that neither eQuibbly, its employees and officers and directors, nor any arbitrator or Judge will be liable to any Party in any action for damages or injunctive relief for any act or omission in connection with an arbitration or the provision of services by eQuibbly.

  3. Any Party who seeks to impose liability on eQuibbly, its employees or officers or directors, or any arbitrator or judge, will indemnify the same for all resulting costs, including attorneys' fees.

  4. The Parties agree that they will not call eQuibbly, its employees or officers or directors, or any arbitrator or Judge as a witness in any litigation or any other proceeding relating to an arbitration. The Parties agree that the arbitrator, Judge, eQuibbly, its employees and officers and directors, are incompetent to testify as witnesses in any such proceeding.

R-37. Witness Expenses

The expenses of a witness for either side will be paid by the Party producing such witness.

R-38. Date and location of the Award

The date the Award is made is the date on which the Judge signs the Award. The 'place of arbitration' or the 'location where the Award is made' is deemed to be New York, NY, USA. If the Parties agree otherwise in writing and inform eQuibbly prior to the issuance of the Award, accommodation can be made for a different 'place of arbitration' for purposes of the Award. Any inaccuracy in the date or location of the Award will not affect the validity of the Award.

R-39. Interpretation and Application of Rules

The Judge will interpret and apply these Rules insofar as they relate to the Judge's powers and duties. If that is not possible, a Party may refer the question to eQuibbly for a final decision.

R-40. Electronic Signatures and Delivery

All participants agree that the same legal rights and obligations occur with any electronic or digital signature used on the Site as it would with a signature signed in ink by hand. There is an option to use an ink signature and unless otherwise stated the Parties and the arbitrator are satisfied that signing using an electronic or digital signature completes and binds documents in such a way that any change is detectable and that the signature is verifiable. Electronic or digital delivery of documents by any party to any other party is an acceptable means of delivering documents and the receiving party may rely on the receipt of such document so executed and delivered by electronic or digital means as if the original had been received.

R-41. Language of Proceedings

The arbitration will be conducted in English, unless otherwise agreed to in advance by the Parties and the Judge.

These Rules are similar to the American Arbitration Association Commercial Arbitration Rules and JAMS Streamlined Arbitration Rules and Procedures. The American Arbitration Association and JAMS are not connected with and do not sponsor or endorse eQuibbly.