Although unable to revisit the arbitration panel’s fact-finding or legal reasoning behind an arbitration award, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld confirmation of the award itself, as it did not violate public policy. The arbitration panel, which acknowledged the policy against contract penalties, nevertheless found the policy inapplicable because it construed the contract clause at issue as a termination provision, rather than as a liquidated damages provision. Petitioners pointed to no laws nor legal precedents indicating that the contract’s termination provisions “setting the terms for ending a joint venture are contrary to well defined and dominant public policy.” Thus, the Court upheld the Southern District’s confirmation of the award.

PDV Sweeny, Inc., et al. v. Conocophillips Co., et al., No. 16-170-cv (2d Cir. Nov. 7, 2016)