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How is an arbitration hearing handled?

Marianella Ventura

General Secretary of the CCL Arbitration Center

Conducting a hearing correctly is essential to ensure fair and equitable treatment of the parties. From the perspective of the arbitrators, this task is crucial, as they are the ones who have the exclusive power to conduct the process in an impartial, independent and efficient manner. In this article, we will describe some audience management techniques that can be used by arbitrators to achieve efficient driving.


1. Planning


First of all, planning is essential. Prior to the hearing, the arbitrator should carefully review your case, familiarize yourself with the arguments presented by both parties, and understand the relevant and applicable regulatory provisions. This will allow you to conduct the hearing in an informed manner, manage it according to the needs of the process, and ensure that all parties have the opportunity to present their arguments.


2. Impartiality


During the hearing and throughout the process, the arbitrator must remain impartial from start to finish. Assertive communication with both parties and the demonstration of respect and courtesy will help establish the trust necessary for the proper development of the hearing. In addition, maintaining control over the audience and avoiding unnecessary interruptions is essential. The referee must ensure that all interventions are related to the case in question and that the discussions remain focused on the relevant points of the case, and not on very personal appraisals or opinions.


3. Managing deadlines


Time management is another crucial aspect. Setting time limits for presentations and questions promotes the process moving forward efficiently by providing predictability and order. The arbitrator must take into account the pre-established limits, at the same time, they will need to show flexibility when necessary to ensure that all parties have the opportunity to present their case.


4. Active Listening


The referee must also be a good listener. Listening carefully to the arguments of both sides and asking clear and pertinent questions demonstrates caringness, availability, and the pursuit of truth and justice. Showing empathy towards the parties, without losing objectivity, is a skill that an experienced referee should cultivate and encourage.


5. Conflict Management


Conflict management can arise in any audience. It is the responsibility of the arbitrator to address these disputes in an effective and neutral manner. Identifying areas of disagreement and seeking reasonable solutions can help keep the audience on the right track and prevent emotions from taking over the process


Hearing management techniques, from the arbitrator’s perspective, are essential to ensure fair and efficient arbitration.


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