An important consideration for many businesses is whether or not to include an arbitration provision when they enter into contracts with other companies, customers or individuals.
Delaware has adopted a new arbitration process, the Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act (DRAA), designed to further expedite what is already intended to be a more efficient resolution method than litigation. The terms of the DRAA indicate that it intends to live up to its name. If parties opt-in to the DRAA in their agreements, arbitrators have 120 days from the day they accept appointment to decide the dispute. The hearing itself is limited to one day, and parties are able to tailor some of the rules they want to apply to their arbitration, including waiver of the right to appeal. All told, it could be possible for a dispute to be resolved with finality in mere months — a significantly shorter timeframe than taking a dispute through the court system.
Any business that is a Delaware corporation, limited liability company or maintains a principal place of business in Delaware can opt-in to the DRAA. As with any other form of arbitration, the choice to opt-in to the DRAA is not without risk — but it is another option that companies may want to consider.