England and Wales - National Report - World Arbitration Reporter (WAR) - 2nd Edition
Guy Pendell is a solicitor advocate and has been a Partner at CMS Cameron McKenna LLP since 2005. He is the Head of the CMS Dispute Resolution Practice Area Group and former Chair of the CMS International Arbitration Group. He has disputes experience across many industry sectors, including financial services, manufacturing, chemicals and engineering, energy, healthcare and hotels & leisure. In international arbitration, Mr. Pendell has acted in many large complex ad hoc and institutional commercial proceedings and has advised on disputes under the following arbitration rules: ICC, LCIA, SCC, UNCITRAL and ICSID. Although Mr. Pendell’s main experience is in English law disputes, he has acted in cases involving many foreign laws (including Austrian, Czech, German, Greek, Russian, Bermudan, Cayman Islands, BVI). Mr. Pendell is the UK rapporteur to the standing ICC Task Force on the New York Convention and a member of the Task Force Working Group. He is a co-author of the CMS Guide to Arbitration and sits as an arbitrator.
Originally from World Arbitration Reporter (WAR) - 2nd Edition
I. INTRODUCTION: ARBITRATION IN ENGLAND AND WALES—HISTORY AND INFRASTRUCTURE
A. History and Current Legislation on Arbitration
1. Historical evolution of law relating to arbitration
Before the Arbitration Act 1996 (the “Act”), the law of arbitration in England and Wales was dealt with by the Arbitration Acts 1950, 1975 and 1979 and a large body of case law. English arbitration was criticised for being inaccessible to lay and to foreign users. It was perceived to be slow and expensive, described as “litigation without wigs.” The English court was also considered to be too willing to intervene in the arbitral process. As a result, arbitration in England was seen as unattractive and London, as the centre for arbitration in England and Wales, was at risk of losing out to other jurisdictions as a venue for international commercial arbitration. The 1979 Act went some way to limit intervention by the court, by restricting the right of appeal, but it did not address the more fundamental problems.
In the 1980s, the Department of Trade and Industry set up the Departmental Advisory Committee on Arbitration Law (the “DAC”) under the Chairmanship of Lord Mustill (then Lord Justice Mustill). One of the priorities for the DAC was whether to recommend enactment of the 1985 UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration (the “Model Law”). The DAC decided against adopting the Model Law in its entirety, but recommended that the new English Arbitration Act should, so far as possible, adopt the structure and language of the Model Law and be clear and accessible. Despite those aspirations, the first draft Bill in February 1994 did little more than consolidate the existing statutes of 1950, 1975 and 1979.