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What legal requirements are there for recognition of an award? Must reasons be given for the award? Does the award need to be reviewed by any other body?
Arbitral awards must be made in writing and signed by all the arbitrators. It is sufficient that the majority of the arbitrators have signed the award, provided that the reason for the minority’s refusal is stated in the award.
Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, the award must state:
- the reasons on which it is based;
- whether it is unanimous and, if it is not, which of the arbitrators that are dissenting and on what grounds; and
- the time and place of the award.
Further, a signed duplicate of the award must be sent to the district court to be kept in its records.
Timeframe for delivery
Are there any time limits on delivery of the award?
Does the law impose limits on the available remedies? Are some remedies not enforceable by the court?
No, but the award may be unenforceable in certain instances.
What interim measures are available? Will local courts issue interim measures pending constitution of the tribunal?
Provided that the parties have not agreed otherwise and on the request of one of the parties, the tribunal may grant interim measures necessary due to the subject matter of the dispute (eg, preserve evidence substantial to the case). However, interim measures are not subject to enforcement by the ordinary courts.
The parties may request interim measures from the courts before or during arbitral proceedings (ie, security attachments and preliminary injunctions), pursuant to Chapters 32 to 34 of the Dispute Act.
Can interest be awarded?
Yes, the tribunal may award interest in accordance with the law applicable to the dispute.
At what rate?
The penalty interest rate pursuant to Norwegian law per January 1 2016 is 8.75% a year, and is subject to adjustment twice a year.
Is the award final and binding?
Awards are final and binding on the parties.
What if there are any mistakes?
Mistakes in computation or any clerical or typographical errors may be corrected by the tribunal ex officio within one month of the issue of the award. The tribunal will hear the parties before making a correction. If the tribunal finds that the request is justified, it must make the correction within one month of the receipt of the request.
Save for any deviating agreement between the parties, the tribunal may also make an additional award on claims brought before it under the arbitral proceedings which should have been included in the original award. Any additional awards must be requested by one of the parties within one month of the receipt of the original award. The additional award must be made within two months of receipt of the request.
Can the parties exclude by agreement any right of appeal or other recourse that the law of your jurisdiction may provide?
On what grounds can parties appeal an award?
An arbitral award cannot be appealed unless agreed by the parties. However, awards may be set aside by a nullity procedure before the ordinary courts if:
- one of the parties to the arbitration agreement lacks legal capacity, or the agreement is invalid under the laws to which the parties have agreed or, failing such agreement, under Norwegian law;
- the party bringing the action for setting aside the award was not given sufficient notice of the appointment of an arbitrator or of the arbitration, or was not given an opportunity to present its case;
- the arbitral award falls outside the scope of the arbitral tribunal’s jurisdiction;
- the composition of the arbitral tribunal was incorrect; or
- the arbitral procedure was contrary to law or the parties’ agreement and it is obvious that this may have affected the decision.
When the issue of an arbitral award’s validity is brought before the courts, the court will set aside the award if:
- the dispute was not capable of being determined by arbitration under Norwegian law; or
- enforcement or recognition of the arbitral award is contrary to public policy.
If the grounds for invalidity affect only part of the award, only that part will be considered invalid.
What is the procedure for challenging awards?
The nullity procedure, by way of issuing a writ before the ordinary courts, must be initiated within three months of receipt of the award. However, if the tribunal corrects mistakes in the award, makes an additional award or handles any request for any corrections or additional awards, the deadline for initiating a nullity procedure before the courts is three months of receipt of the decision.
If the court finds grounds to set aside the award it may, at the request of a party, adjourn the action for setting aside the award and refer the case back to the tribunal for further processing and a new decision if the court finds that this may result in the reversal of the grounds for setting aside the award.
Setting aside an arbitral award implies that the arbitration agreement again becomes effective, unless otherwise agreed by the parties or implied in the judgment.
What steps can be taken to enforce the award if there is a failure to comply?
Both Norwegian and foreign arbitral awards are considered enforceable in Norway. The enforcement request must be sent to the local enforcement authorities or the local district court, depending on whether the award is Norwegian or foreign.
Can awards be enforced in local courts?
How enforceable is the award internationally?
A Norwegian award should be enforceable in all member states of the New York Convention.
To what extent might a state or state entity successfully raise a defence of state or sovereign immunity at the enforcement stage?
In principle, enforcement cannot be carried out against assets owned by a state, except if the assets are related to the state's regular commercial business.
Are there any other bases on which an award may be challenged, and if so, by what?
The recognition or enforcement of an arbitral award may be refused if:
- one of the parties to the arbitration agreement lacks legal capacity, or the arbitration agreement is invalid under the laws agreed by the parties or, failing such agreement, under the law of the jurisdiction in which the arbitral award was made;
- the party against which the arbitral award is being invoked was not given sufficient notice of the appointment of an arbitrator or the arbitration, or was not given an opportunity to present its case;
- the arbitral award falls outside the scope of the tribunal’s jurisdiction;
- the composition of the arbitral tribunal was incorrect;
- the arbitral procedure was contrary to the law of the place of arbitration or the parties’ agreement, and it is obvious that this may have affected the decision; or
- the arbitral award is not yet binding on the parties or it has been set aside (permanently or temporarily) by a court at the place of arbitration or by a court in the jurisdiction of the law which has been applied to the dispute.
The courts will ex officio refuse recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award if:
- the dispute cannot be determined by arbitration under Norwegian law; or
- recognition or enforcement of the arbitral award would be contrary to public policy (ordre public).
If the reason for refusing recognition or enforcement affects only part of the award, only that part will be refused.
How enforceable are foreign arbitral awards in your jurisdiction?
Both Norwegian and foreign arbitral awards are recognised and enforceable in Norway.
Will an award that has been set aside by the courts in the seat of arbitration be enforced in your jurisdiction?
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