SUPREME COURT OF SWEDEN DECISION IN CASE NO: B 156-09 ON JUNE 9, 2010 “KORSNÄS AB VS. AB FORTUM VÄRME SAMÄGT MED STOCKHOLMS STAD”
Subject-matters: Whether one of the arbitrators in the arbitral tribunal did not meet the impartiality requirements imposed by the Swedish Arbitration Act. Whether the arbitrator in question had such ties to the law firm representing the respondent so as to unauthorise him from participating in the proceedings. Question of to which extent an arbitrator can accept appointments as arbitrator by the same law firm without creating the impression of having attachments to the law firm.
Findings: The Supreme Court stated that the Swedish Arbitration Act requires an arbitrator to be impartial. However, when determining whether an arbitrator has attachments to a law firm by which he has been appointed as arbitrator a full assessment must be made taking into account the circumstances in each individual case. Such assessment should, inter alia, distinguish between appointments as party-appointed arbitrator and as chair of an arbitral tribunal. In the case at hand the Supreme Court found that the number of appointments and the manner in which they were made was not sufficient to question the impartiality of the arbitrator.
Appellant: Korsnäs AB
Respondent: AB Fortum Värme samägt med Stockholms Stad