Online Arbitration Hearings: A review of key developments in response to COVID-19

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Arbitration users are well-accustomed to remote hearings. Whether a procedural hearing held by telephone, or a witness cross-examined by video-link, the technology to conduct remote hearings in international arbitration has been available and has been used for many years. The conduct of a fully remote hearing in international arbitration is, however, something that has been relatively rare until now.

In the first of our reports in this series, we surveyed lawyers across our global platform and spoke to our clients to distil some common themes about their experience of online hearings (both court proceedings and arbitration) in the immediate aftermath of COVID-19 confinement. In this second report, we focus on arbitration and look at how arbitral institutions have adapted in response to COVID-19. We draw out some of the key legal as well as practical challenges faced, and we offer some observations on what the future may look like.

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