Under what circumstances the court can revoke the authority of an arbitrator?

Under what circumstances the court can revoke the authority of an arbitrator?

(1) Introduction

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked not only through arbitration agreement, but also with leave of court. It reveals that there are two modes for revocation of authority of arbitrator. However, authority of arbitrator can be revoked with leave of court only when no procedure has been provided in arbitration agreement for revocation of authority of arbitrator.

(2) Revocation Of Authority Of Arbitrator

According to Arbitration Act, following points are important for explanation of revocation of authority of arbitrator:

(i) Irrevocable authority

(ii) Exceptions

(iii) Revocation of authority of arbitrator on certain Conditions

 

(i) Irrevocable Authority

Authority of an appointed arbitrator remains irrevocable. Even authority of arbitrator cannot be revoked by death of any party by whom he/she was appointed.

(ii) Exceptions

Following two exceptions have been provided against irrevocable authority of arbitrator:

(a) Contrary intention in arbitration agreement

(b) With leave of court

 

(a) Contrary Intention In Arbitration Agreement

Authority of arbitrator does not remain irrevocable when contrary intention is present in arbitration agreement. In other words, authority of arbitrator can be revoked when some procedure has been provided in arbitration agreement for revocation of authority of arbitrator. It means that authority of arbitrator can be revoked by adopting this procedure.

(b) With Leave Of Court

Another exception is that authority of arbitrator can be revoked with leave of court. It means that court is competent to revoke authority of arbitrator.

(iii) Revocation Of Authority Of Arbitrator On Certain Conditions

No-doubt authority of arbitrator can be revoked when contrary intenton is present in arbitration agreement. Even it can aslo be revoked with leave of court. However, it can be revoked only on certain conditions. Followings are some of these conditions:

(a) Illness

(b) Bribery

(c) Immorality

(d) Misconduct

(e) Disqualification

(f) Mental incapability

(g) Exceeding authority

(h) Incapability to understand

(i) Refusal to exercise powers

(j) Legal mistake in appointment

 

(a) Illness

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked when he/she is suffering from some illness.

(b) Bribery

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked if there is that he/she has taken bribery

(c) Immorality

Immorality can be that condition on which authority of arbitrator can be revoked.

(d) Misconduct

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked when he/she has committed misconduct.

(e) Disqualification

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked if he/she has been disqualified from office of arbitrator.

(f) Mental Incapability

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked when he/she is suffering from some mental incapability.

(g) Exceeding Authority

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked if he/she exceeds his/her authority.

(h) Incapability To Understand

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked when he/she is suffering from some incapability due to which he/she is not able to understand that matter, which has been referred to him/her.

(i) Refusal To Exercise Powers

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked if he/she intentionally refuses to exercise his/her powers.

(j) Legal Mistake In Appointment

Authority of arbitrator can be revoked when some legal mistakes has been committed in his/her appointment.

 

(3) Conclusion

 

To conclude, it can be stated that authority of arbitrator can be revoked when there are certain doubts about impartiality of arbitrator or he/she does not possess required qualifications or he/she is mentally or physically unable to conduct proceedings of arbitration. It reveals that there can be several conditions for revocation of authority of arbitrator. However, Honourable Apex Courts have suggested that court should exercise its power with great care to revoke authority of arbitrator.

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