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Challenging an arbitral award: DB v DLJ [2016] EWHC 324 (Fam)

Date:26 FEB 2016
Barrister and Arbitrator
One of the reservations that has been expressed about family law arbitration is not knowing if the arbitral award will be binding.

In the recent Practice Guidance - Arbitration in the Family Court (23 November 2015) Sir James Munby P notes that while not every award will need to be brought before the Family Court:

'[4] In order to be effective elements of some arbitral awards (by comprehensive dismissal of claims to create a clean break or so as to bind the provider to a pension split for example) will require their terms to be reflected in a Family Court order. If enforcement of the award becomes necessary doing so via Family Court processes will be available only if orders reflecting the award are obtained'.

Since a judge cannot be compelled to approve a draft ancillary relief consent order ('... he is no mere rubber stamp': Tommey v Tommey [1983] Fam 15 per Balcombe J at para [21]) what is the risk of a 'slip twixt cup and lip' where the court refuses to approve an order reflecting...

Read the full article here.