09 Jul 2020
On Wednesday 8 July 2020, the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) hosted an online panel discussion to mark the release of the updated Adjudication Guidance Notes, developed jointly with the Adjudication Society. Moderated by Lewis Johnston ACIArb (Head of Policy), the panel included Ciaran Fahy C.Arb FCIArb (Chair, Adjudication Sub-Committee), Jeremy Glover (Partner, Fenwick Elliott), Matt Molloy C.Arb FCIArb (Director, MCMS), Susan Francombe FCIArb (Barrister, Arbitrator & Adjudicator, Adjudication Society), and Kim Franklin QC C.Arb FCIArb (Barrister, Chartered Arbitrator & Construction Adjudicator, Crown Chambers).
CIArb and the Adjudication Society started producing Guidance for adjudication in England, Wales and Scotland in 2010. Their purpose is to assist not only adjudicators, but also parties and party representatives in respect of the key issues that they might encounter when dealing with adjudication under the Housing Grant, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996, and the subsequent Local Democracy Economic Development and Construction Act 2009. The revised suite of Guidance Notes comprises 4 documents:
Following an introduction from Lewis Johnston, Ciaran Fahy and Susan Francombe then gave an overview of the motivation behind the Guidance Notes and where they fit within the objectives of CIArb and the Adjudication Society. They and the other members of the drafting committee on the panel (Jeremy Glover and Matt Molloy) then summarized each document in turn, setting out where amendments had been made and explaining their rationale.
Following the Guidelines summary, the panel then discussed some of the wider issues affecting Adjudication and assessed some of the trends and likely challenges it may face in the coming years. The theme that dominated the discussion was the need for Adjudicator Nominating Bodies (ANBs) to draw from as diverse a talent pool as possible if adjudication is to retain the characteristics that make it an attractive form of dispute resolution. Kim Franklin QC also made the important point that as a relatively ‘low-tech’ form of alternative dispute resolution (where over 80% of cases are resolved on a documents-only basis), adjudication is ideally suited to meet the challenges posed of the COVID-19 lockdowns (and the likely increase in cases that may bring).
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