Arbitrating IP Disputes

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Neutrality & Party Autonomy

Unlike in court litigation, where multiple proceedings take place under different jurisdictions rendering potential incoherent conclusions, arbitral proceeding are governed by the law chosen by the parties. This is highly beneficial especially in the case of intellectual property disputes which often involve parties from across borders. The language of the arbitral proceedings, location of arbitration tribunals and the nationality of the arbitrator may also be selected. In arbitral tribunals consisting of three arbitrators, each party is entitled to appoint one arbitrator. In the case of arbitral proceedings consisting of a sole arbitrator, parties may reach an arbitral agreement to appoint an arbitrator from a third country or to hold the hearing in a third country to mitigate the likelihood of ‘resident advantage’.

Confidentiality

Intellectual property disputes are often concerned with highly confidential information. While court decisions are privy to the public, the arbitration awards and proceedings remain confidential.

Flexibility

Arbitrators may offer nontraditional remedies suited especially to the case at hand while also allowing for injunctions and interim relief.

Technicality

As the laws concerned with intellectual property disputes are complex, through arbitration, parties may select their arbitrator specialised in the concerned dispute.

Enforceability

Under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, arbitral awards are deemed to be of equal legal potency as court judgments.

Finality

While court judgments may be appealed or re-tried, arbitral awards are final and immediate.

Efficiency

Proceedings of intellectual property disputes brought to trial often take a long time and thus are of high costs. Arbitration offers more time and cost effective proceedings suited to the parties and the arbitrators.

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