Canadian Lawyer InHouse

June/July 2020

Legal news and trends for Canadian in-house counsel and c-suite executives

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Toronto: a very attractive place to arbitrate Participants in international arbitrations get all the support they need, at a much more reasonable cost than traditional venues TORONTO IS AN ideal location for commercial arbitration, both as a juridical seat and as a venue to hold hearings, either in person or virtually. In addition to its modern arbitral legislation and arbitration-friendly courts, Toronto offers first-class facilities to counsel and parties. "Whenever I am speaking with someone who is facing an arbitration in North America, or even Latin America, I tell them to consider Toronto as a venue," says Kevin Kim of Peter & Kim in Seoul. "Objectively, Canada is a neutral venue for Asian and European parties, and Toronto is a very attractive place." In 2015, Kim conducted a three-week hearing at Arbitration Place in Toronto. "The service was really impressive," he says. "It's one of the best hearing centres I've ever been to. I really enjoyed holding our arbitration in Toronto." Ontario courts provide strong support for arbitration, ensuring not only that arbitral agreements are abided by but also that arbitral awards, both domestic and foreign, are enforced. "It's clear that arbitrators in Toronto can be robust in the way they handle procedure," says Australian arbitrator Professor Doug Jones AO, who is partially based in Toronto. "In many other jurisdictions, there is potential interference from courts that limits the way a tribunal can run a case." Where Toronto is the juridical seat or place of a commercial arbitration, the conduct of the proceeding is governed by either Ontario's modern domestic act or its international act, which adopts the 2006 amendments to the UNCITRAL Model Law. The Model Law, which is also part of the federal arbitration statute, has been adopted in 111 jurisdictions around the world. The Commercial Court branch of the Superior Court, with a dedicated roster of judges specialized in corporate-commercial matters, is in Toronto, and it can be called upon to assist or supervise arbitrations when necessary. As a hearing venue, Toronto offers ease of access and first-class facilities, including robust online platforms such as the recently launched Arbitration Place Virtual. Kim says he was impressed by the strength of Toronto's law firms and also the quality of Toronto's hotels and restaurants, which he found very reasonably priced when compared with New York or London. While it may not be an immediate issue, "it is often easier to get witnesses to Toronto on short notice," says Jones, "not only because of the great airline network but also because of immigration issues you can face in the U.K. or the States." SPECIAL PROMOTIONAL FEATURE Toronto Commercial Arbitration Society *EDI credit only for one of the two years. Gold Standard Course in Commercial Arbitration © is now Registering for the 2020/2021 Course This will be the fifth year in which TCAS offers this comprehensive course in commercial arbitration as it is practised in Canada. It covers both international and non-international arbitration from that perspective. The Course meets, and exceeds, the Gold Standard © requirements of the ADR Institute of Canada. Successful completion of the Course, satisfies the training requirements for the Q.Arb designation conferred by the ADR Institute of Canada. The Course currently in progress was certified by the LSO as satisfying all CPD requirements for each participant for both 2020 and 2021*. The course is offered, by personal attendance in Toronto and by video conference, to participants anywhere in Canada. Click HERE for course and registration details Comments from prior students: Rahat Godil, Partner, Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP: "Practical, useful and in-depth arbitration training…" Ron Dash, Mediator and Arbitrator, ADR Chambers (Former Master of the Supreme Court of Ontario): "Everything I didn't know about arbitration." Michael Schafler, Partner, Dentons: "This is the A-Z course about arbitration essentials - fabulous!" Brought to you by

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