The annulment of an arbitral award on the grounds of public policy in light of the judgment issued by the Constitutional Court on 15 june 2020

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Published in Spain Arbitration Review

This article analyses the situation of the doctrine and case law regarding the annulment of arbitral awards by the High Courts in Spain, and how this issue is dealt with on an international level.

1. The Spanish arbitration system is governed by Law 60/2003, of 23 December, on Arbitration (the “Spanish Arbitration Act”)3, which was later amended by Law 11/2011, of 20 May4. This regulation provides that when parties decide to submit their dispute to arbitration, judicial bodies are automatically precluded from hearing the case5. Consequently, the intervention of judicial bodies is limited only to control and support functions.

2. Among those functions, one of the most significant is the acknowledgement of the annulment of arbitral awards6. Prior to the amendment of the Spanish Arbitration Act, the annulment of arbitral awards was considered an appeal, under which it was possible to review the award in circumstances where the law or jurisprudence had been breached7.

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