New Arbitrator Pilot Program

Table of Contents

Program Overview

Introduction to the Pilot Program

The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (“CIArb”) is the world’s leading qualifications and professional body for dispute avoidance and dispute management.  It offers world-renowned education and practical training in arbitration.  This includes training courses that allow successful participants to achieve the designation Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb), the highest grade of CIArb membership.

CIArb Canada is piloting a New Arbitrator Program for recently-qualified Fellows of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. The Program is an unpaid learning opportunity designed to provide practical experience to newly-qualified arbitrators. New Arbitrators are appointed to decide commercial disputes between parties that have chosen arbitration as their dispute resolution process. The New Arbitrator Program operates across Canada.

CIArb Canada appreciates feedback about the New Arbitrator Program. Please click here to access the Feedback Form.

Statement of Purpose

The purpose of the CIArb New Arbitrator Program is to provide recently-qualified arbitrators with practical ‘hands-on’ experience in conducting commercial arbitration proceedings and in writing enforceable awards under the guidance of an experienced arbitrator. 

Many recently-qualified arbitrators find it difficult to obtain appointments because they lack actual experience as an arbitrator. The New Arbitrator Program bridges the gap between qualifying as an arbitrator and becoming an experienced practitioner eligible to be on a roster of an arbitral institution. Therefore, the New Arbitrator Program is consistent with the CIArb’s dual mandates to promote arbitration as an alternative to litigation in the courts, and to provide education and training in alternative dispute resolution. In addition, the New Arbitrator Program advances diversity initiatives by providing opportunities for qualified but inexperienced arbitrators, who may be young and/or from historically disadvantaged and/or underrepresented groups. Finally, the New Arbitrator Program supports access to justice because New Arbitrators provide their services for no charge.

Eligible New Arbitrators

Click here to access the list of eligible New Arbitrators.

The Two Program Models

The New Arbitrator Program has two models – the Expedited Procedures Model and the Panel Model. In both Models, the parties may select their New Arbitrator(s) from the CIArb roster found on the CIArb Canada website. Click here to access the list of eligible New Arbitrators. Parties are assured that the New Arbitrator appointed to determine their dispute has access to an approved Experienced Arbitrator to provide confidential procedural advice during the process at no cost to the parties.

The Expedited Procedures Model assists parties to resolve commercial disputes with a value ranging between $5,000 and $250,000. In some communities, the CIArb Canada Branch works in partnership with provincial legal aid/pro bono organizations to provide this service. This Model offers parties faster, more efficient dispute resolution than can often be achieved in the courts and enhances access to justice for parties who are otherwise unable to afford it. Under this Model, the New Arbitrator may seek procedural advice from an approved Experienced Arbitrator, on a confidential basis, at no cost to the parties.

The Panel Model offers parties who/which have already agreed to have their commercial dispute decided by a sole arbitrator, two additional volunteer New Arbitrators to sit as members of a three-person panel. In essence, this Model offers three arbitrators, all of whom fully participate and share the workload, for the price of one. Under this Model, the sole arbitrator who is appointed and paid by the parties pursuant to their arbitration agreement shall be the Chair of the Panel and will be considered the Experienced Arbitrator under this New Arbitrator Program.

Why Participate in the Pilot Program?

For New Arbitrators, the New Arbitrator Program provides practical ‘hands-on’ experience as arbitrator, under the guidance of an approved Experienced Arbitrator. This allows New Arbitrators to advance their careers and gain first-hand experience as arbitration practitioners eligible to be listed on a roster of an arbitral institution.

For Experienced Arbitrators, the New Arbitrator Program provides an opportunity to train, develop, and mentor recently-qualified arbitrators under either the Expedited Procedures Model or the Panel Model.  Participation in the New Arbitrator Program may also qualify for continuing legal education credits in some provincial jurisdictions.

For disputing parties, the New Arbitrator Program provides qualified arbitrators who are willing to work free of charge to resolve their commercial disputes. The parties also benefit from the fact that the arbitration must take place in private, while court proceedings are open to the public.

General Principles for Proceedings Conducted under the New Arbitrator Program

Rules of Procedure

  1. The Expedited Procedures Model. Parties who agree to participate in the New Arbitrator Program (Expedited Procedures Model) on the basis that the amount at issue in the arbitration is between $5,000 and $250,000 agree that the arbitration shall be conducted pursuant to the Simplified Arbitration Procedure set out in Rule 6.2 of the ADR Institute of Canada (“ADRIC”) Arbitration Rules, regardless of whether their arbitration agreement provides otherwise, except that ADRIC shall not administer the arbitration and the CIArb Canada New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee shall serve as the appointing authority to appoint the New Arbitrator under Rule 3 of the ADRIC Arbitration Rules. The decision of the New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee shall be final. Click here for the Expedited Procedures Model Terms.
  2. The Panel Model. Parties who agree to participate in the New Arbitrator Program (Panel Model) and who cannot agree upon who will be appointed to the three-person panel and/or the Arbitrator who will serve as Chair of the Panel, or whose arbitration agreement does not so provide, may agree that the CIArb Canada Branch New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee shall serve as the appointing authority in accordance with the procedure set out in Rule 3 of the ADRIC Arbitration Rules. The decision of the New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee shall be final. Click here for the Panel Model Terms.
  3. Click here for the ADRIC Arbitration Rules.

Authority of the Advisory Committee

  1. The CIArb Canada New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee shall have the sole decision-making authority to approve any:
    • New Arbitrator Application;
    • Experienced Arbitrator Application; and
    • Party Application (under the Expedited Procedures Model).
  2. The decision of the Advisory Committee shall be final.

Fees and Disbursements of the New Arbitrator

  1. The New Arbitrator will participate in the New Arbitrator Program on a volunteer basis, and will not charge the parties for fees or disbursements (out-of-pocket expenses).

Independence and Impartiality of the Arbitrator and Fairness

  1. The New and the Experienced Arbitrator (if any) must be and remain wholly independent and impartial throughout the arbitration.
  2. The New Arbitrator and Experienced Arbitrator (if any) must treat each party fairly and give each party a fair opportunity to present its case.

Privacy and Confidentiality

  1. Unless the parties agree otherwise, the arbitration proceedings must take place in private.

No Liability

  1. None of CIArb, CIArb Canada, ADRIC, the New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee members, nor the New Arbitrator or Experienced Arbitrator (if any) shall be liable to any party for any act or omission in connection with any arbitration conducted under this New Arbitrator Program.
  2. The New Arbitrator and the Experienced Arbitrator (if any) have the same protections and immunity as a Judge of the superior courts of Canada.

Eligibility to Participate in the New Arbitrator Program

All participants in the New Arbitrator Program must apply to and be accepted by CIArb Canada. All applications will be submitted to and decided by a three-person New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee comprised of members of CIArb Canada who have achieved the FCIArb designation or equivalent. The names of the members of the Advisory Committee will be posted on the CIArb Canada website, along with other information about the Internship Arbitration Program.

Eligibility to participate as a New Arbitrator

To be eligible to participate as a New Arbitrator, an applicant must:

  1. be a Fellow of the CIArb in good standing, who is also a member of CIArb Canada;
  2. not have been previously appointed as an arbitrator or, despite having been appointed, not have completed an arbitration from commencement through to delivery of a final award; and
  3. have applied to and been accepted by the CIArb Canada New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee for the New Arbitrator Program to be listed on the CIArb Canada website.

A New Arbitrator shall be eligible to participate in the New Arbitrator Program for up to three arbitration proceedings, provided that at least one of those proceedings has resulted in the issuance of a final award which the New Arbitrator has written or participated in writing.

The CIArb Canada New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee may, in its sole discretion, permit a New Arbitrator to participate in more than three arbitration proceedings if this would achieve the purposes of the New Arbitrator Program.

Click here to access the New Arbitrator Application.

Eligibility to participate as an Experienced Arbitrator

To be eligible to participate as an Experienced Arbitrator, an applicant must:

  1. be a Fellow of the CIArb, or other equivalent designation, in good standing;
  2. have conducted at least three full arbitration proceedings from start to delivery of a final award, which the applicant has written or participated in writing; and
  3. have applied to and been accepted by the CIArb Canada Branch New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee for the New Arbitrator Program.

Click here to access the Experienced Arbitrator Application.

Eligibility to participate as a Party

Expedited Procedures Model

To be eligible to take advantage of the cost savings afforded by the New Arbitrator Program, (Expedited Procedures Model) parties who have agreed to resolve their dispute by arbitration must:

  1. have a commercial dispute with a total value ranging between $5,000 and $250,000;
  2. have applied to and been accepted by the CIArb Canada New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee to have their dispute decided pursuant to the New Arbitrator Program (Expedited Procedures Model); and
  3. have accepted all terms and conditions of the New Arbitrator Program, including the General Principles for Proceedings Conducted under the New Arbitrator Program and the Expedited Procedures Model Terms.

Click here to access the Party Application (Expedited Procedures Model).

Panel Model

Parties who/which have already agreed to have their commercial dispute resolved by a sole arbitrator may participate in the New Arbitrator Program (Panel Model) so that their dispute is resolved by a three-person panel of arbitrators. They must accept all terms and conditions of the New Arbitrator Program, including the General Principles for Proceedings Conducted under the New Arbitrator Program and the Panel Model Terms.

The New Arbitrator Program Advisory Committee

Presently, the Advisory Committee for the New Arbitrator Program includes:

Lisa C. Munro is a partner at Lerners LLP in Toronto. She is an arbitrator on the Arbitration Place, Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society, and Vancouver International Arbitration Centre rosters. She brings to this role more than 25 years of experience as counsel in commercial/business litigation and both international and domestic commercial arbitration. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb) and has obtained the ADR Institute of Canada’s Qualified Arbitrator (Q.Arb) designation. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Canada Branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and is the Editor of Arbitration Matters (www.arbitrationmatters.com).

Stephen L. Drymer is a partner and head of the International Arbitration practice at Woods LLP in Montréal. A litigator and advocate by background and experience, he now practices almost exclusively in the area of domestic and international arbitration and dispute resolution. He is immediate past Chair of the Arbitration Committee of ICC Canada and the Canadian National Committee of the ICC International Court of Arbitration.

Murray L. Smith Q.C. is a barrister practising out of Smith Barristers in Vancouver. With more than 30 years’ experience as a trial lawyer, his practice is now confined to commercial arbitration cases. He is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb) and a Fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators. He was previously Chairman of the North American Branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.