On 11 March 2020, ACICA held a joint seminar with the NSW Young Lawyers Business Law Committee on the topic of the drafting of dispute resolution clauses at the Law Society of NSW. The seminar aimed at educating junior transactional lawyers in the first five years of their careers, as well as law students interested in this area, about the importance of drafting effective dispute resolution clauses. The seminar was well attended, with over 35 junior practitioners and law students in attendance. On the night, Brenda Horrigan and Joachim Delaney of ACICA explained the benefits and drawbacks of arbitration in comparison with the other methods of dispute resolution before taking a closer look at drafting effective arbitration clauses. The attendees learnt about the factors to consider in choosing an arbitral institution and, arbitration rules being one of those considerations, had copies of the ACICA rules distributed by way of an introduction to the rules and procedure in arbitration. The speakers shared some of their experience with defective arbitration clauses in practice, which re-emphasised the need for careful drafting. At the end of the seminar, the attendees eagerly participated in identifying deficiencies in dispute resolution clauses in problem questions that the speakers prepared. The seminar received positive feedback, and many attendees were grateful for the opportunity to learn a great deal about arbitration from the leading practitioners in the field. Those attendees with interest in arbitration were encouraged to join ACICA45. It is hoped the knowledge obtained would be helpful in the attendees’ daily practices and that there are future opportunities for ACICA and NSWYL Business Law Committee to cooperate and expand the arbitration community in Australia.
Author: Olga Kubyk, NSW Business Law Committee