Proceedings subsequent to issuance of award

Interpretation and correction of awards

Does the arbitral tribunal have the power to correct or interpret an award on its own or at the parties’ initiative? What time limits apply?

The tribunal may correct any material errors in the award that are clerical or computational on its own initiative or following the request of a party. A request to correct such errors should be made within 30 days from receiving the award.

Challenge of awards

How and on what grounds can awards be challenged and set aside?

Awards can be set aside on the following grounds:

  • there is no arbitration agreement or the agreement is void or has lapsed;
  • a party agreeing to arbitration does not have the capacity to agree to arbitration;
  • a party fails to present its case in the arbitration because it was not given proper notice of the appointment of an arbitrator, of the arbitral proceedings or for any other reason beyond its control;
  • the award excludes the application of the parties’ choice of law for the dispute;
  • the composition of the tribunal or the appointment of the arbitrator was not in accordance with the law or the agreement between the parties;
  • the arbitral proceedings were marred by procedural irregularity or the arbitral award was not issued within the specified time frame;
  • the award goes beyond the arbitrator’s scope;
  • the subject matter of the dispute cannot be settled by arbitration; or
  • the arbitral award conflicts with the public order and morality of the state.
Levels of appeal

How many levels of appeal are there? How long does it generally take until a challenge is decided at each level? Approximately what costs are incurred at each level? How are costs apportioned among the parties?

There are only two levels of appeal when challenging an arbitral award. Note, however, that no appeal is available on the merits of the award, and, an award can be challenged on limited grounds (see question 48).

An application to set aside an award must be brought before the Court of Appeal within 30 days from receiving notice of the award. Any appeal must be filed before the Court of Cassation.

Recognition and enforcement

What requirements exist for recognition and enforcement of domestic and foreign awards, what grounds exist for refusing recognition and enforcement, and what is the procedure?

A party seeking ratification and enforcement of a domestic award is required to file suit in the Court of Appeal to ratify the award. On ratification, it can be enforced through the local enforcement courts. Since the UAE has ratified the New York Convention, a foreign award may be enforceable in the country provided that the award was rendered in a country that has ratified the New York Convention. The UAE courts generally apply the provisions of the New York Convention in the enforcement of a foreign arbitral award. New regulations have recently been introduced for the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards. These regulations have not yet been tested, but in theory they make the enforcement of foreign arbitral awards faster and easier than the enforcement of local arbitral awards. The UAE courts, and in particular the Dubai courts, tend to look favourably on enforcement of awards.

Time limits for enforcement of arbitral awards

Is there a limitation period for the enforcement of arbitral awards?


Enforcement of foreign awards

What is the attitude of domestic courts to the enforcement of foreign awards set aside by the courts at the place of arbitration?

It is unlikely that a local court will enforce an award if it has been set aside by the courts in the seat of arbitration. Article V(e) of the New York Conventions states that the recognition or enforcement of an award can be refused if the award has been set aside.

Enforcement of orders by emergency arbitrators

Does your domestic arbitration legislation, case law or the rules of domestic arbitration institutions provide for the enforcement of orders by emergency arbitrators?

The Arbitration Law does not specifically provide for such a mechanism. In theory, however, the enforcement of an order by an emergency arbitrator is possible under the same procedure to enforce interim orders.

Cost of enforcement

What costs are incurred in enforcing awards?

The costs involved in enforcing awards depend on the court where enforcement proceedings are initiated. Such costs are not recoverable (other than the court fees).