Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

File No. 582

    February Session, 2018

Substitute House Bill No. 5258

House of Representatives, April 19, 2018

The Committee on Judiciary reported through REP. TONG of the 147th Dist., Chairperson of the Committee on the part of the House, that the substitute bill ought to pass.

AN ACT ADOPTING THE REVISED UNIFORM ARBITRATION ACT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) As used in sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act:

(1) "Arbitration organization" means an association, agency, board, commission or other entity that is neutral and initiates, sponsors or administers an arbitration proceeding or is involved in the appointment of an arbitrator.

(2) "Arbitrator" means an individual appointed to render an award, alone or with others, in a controversy that is subject to an agreement to arbitrate.

(3) "Court" means the Superior Court.

(4) "Knowledge" means actual knowledge.

(5) "Person" means an individual, corporation, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, government, governmental subdivision, agency or instrumentality, public corporation or any other legal or commercial entity.

(6) "Record" means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in a perceivable form.

Sec. 2. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Except as otherwise provided in sections 9, 15, 19, 20 and 22 to 24, inclusive, of this act, a person gives notice to another person by taking action that is reasonably necessary to inform the other person in ordinary course, whether or not the other person acquires knowledge of the notice.

(b) A person has notice if the person has knowledge of the notice or has received notice.

(c) A person receives notice when the notice comes to the person's attention or the notice is delivered at the person's place of residence or place of business, or at another location held out by the person as a place of delivery of such communications.

Sec. 3. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) Sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act govern an agreement to arbitrate made on or after October 1, 2018, except that any proceeding that is governed by chapter 48, 68, 113, 166 or 743b of the general statutes, or any other provision of the general statutes, related to an agreement to arbitrate that was made prior to, on or after October 1, 2018, shall be subject to chapter 909 of the general statutes, unless:

(1) (A) All the parties to the proceeding agree in a record to be governed by sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act, and (B) the agreement under subparagraph (A) of this subdivision is permitted by a law of this state other than sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act; or

(2) The proceeding is governed by sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act pursuant to a law of this state other than sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act.

Sec. 4. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Except as otherwise provided in subsections (b) and (c) of this section, a party to an agreement to arbitrate or to an arbitration proceeding may waive, or the parties may vary the effect of, the requirements of sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act to the extent permitted by law.

(b) Before a controversy arises that is subject to an agreement to arbitrate, a party to the agreement may not:

(1) Waive or agree to vary the effect of the requirements of subsection (a) of section 5 of this act, subsection (a) of section 6 of this act, section 8 of this act, subsection (a) or (b) of section 17 of this act and section 26 or 28 of this act;

(2) Agree to unreasonably restrict the right under section 9 of this act to notice of the initiation of an arbitration proceeding;

(3) Agree to unreasonably restrict the right under section 12 of this act to disclosure of any facts by a neutral arbitrator; or

(4) Waive the right under section 16 of this act of a party to an agreement to arbitrate to be represented by a lawyer at any proceeding or hearing under sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act, provided an employer and a labor organization may waive the right to representation by a lawyer in a labor arbitration.

(c) A party to an agreement to arbitrate or arbitration proceeding may not waive, or the parties may not vary the effect of, the requirements of this section or section 3, 7, 14 or 18 of this act, subsection (d) or (e) of section 20 of this act, or sections 22, 23, 24, 25, 29, 30 and 31 of this act or section 37-3a of the general statutes, as amended by this act.

Sec. 5. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Except as otherwise provided in section 28 of this act, an application for judicial relief under sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act shall be made by motion to the court and heard in the manner provided by law or rule of court for making and hearing motions.

(b) Unless a civil action involving the agreement to arbitrate is pending, notice of an initial motion to the court under sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act must be served in the manner provided by law for the service of a summons in a civil action. Otherwise, notice of the motion must be given in the manner provided by law or rule of court for serving motions in pending cases.

Sec. 6. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An agreement contained in a record to submit to arbitration any existing or subsequent controversy arising between the parties to the agreement is valid, enforceable and irrevocable, except upon a ground that exists at law or in equity for the revocation of a contract.

(b) The court shall decide whether an agreement to arbitrate exists or a controversy is subject to an agreement to arbitrate.

(c) An arbitrator shall decide whether a condition precedent to arbitrability has been fulfilled and whether a contract containing a valid agreement to arbitrate is enforceable.

(d) If a party to a judicial proceeding challenges the existence of, or claims that a controversy is not subject to, an agreement to arbitrate, the arbitration proceeding may continue pending final resolution of the issue by the court, unless the court otherwise orders.

Sec. 7. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) On motion of a person showing an agreement to arbitrate and alleging another person's refusal to arbitrate pursuant to the agreement:

(1) If the refusing party does not appear or does not oppose the motion, the court shall order the parties to arbitrate; and

(2) If the refusing party opposes the motion, the court shall proceed summarily to decide the issue and order the parties to arbitrate unless it finds that there is no enforceable agreement to arbitrate.

(b) On motion of a person alleging that an arbitration proceeding has been initiated or threatened but that there is no agreement to arbitrate, the court shall proceed summarily to decide the issue. If the court finds that there is an enforceable agreement to arbitrate, it shall order the parties to arbitrate.

(c) If the court finds that there is no enforceable agreement, it may not order the parties to arbitrate under this section.

(d) The court may not refuse to order arbitration because the claim subject to arbitration lacks merit or grounds for the claim have not been established.

(e) If a proceeding involving a claim referable to arbitration under an alleged agreement to arbitrate is pending in court, a motion under this section must be made in that court. Otherwise, a motion under this section may be made in any court specified in section 27 of this act.

(f) If a party makes a motion to the court to order arbitration, the court on just terms shall stay any judicial proceeding that involves a claim alleged to be subject to the arbitration until the court renders a final decision under this section.

(g) If the court orders arbitration, the court on just terms shall stay any judicial proceeding that involves a claim subject to the arbitration. If a claim subject to the arbitration is severable, the court may limit the stay to that claim.

Sec. 8. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Before an arbitrator is appointed and is authorized and able to act, the court, upon motion of a party to an arbitration proceeding and for good cause shown, may enter an order for provisional remedies to protect the effectiveness of the arbitration proceeding to the same extent and under the same conditions as if the controversy were the subject of a civil action.

(b) After an arbitrator is appointed and is authorized and able to act:

(1) The arbitrator may issue such orders for provisional remedies, including interim awards, as the arbitrator finds necessary to protect the effectiveness of the arbitration proceeding and to promote the fair and expeditious resolution of the controversy, to the same extent and under the same conditions as if the controversy were the subject of a civil action; and

(2) A party to an arbitration proceeding may move the court for a provisional remedy only if the matter is urgent and the arbitrator is not able to act timely or the arbitrator cannot provide an adequate remedy.

(c) A party does not waive a right of arbitration by making a motion under subsection (a) or (b) of this section.

Sec. 9. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) A person initiates an arbitration proceeding by giving notice in a record to the other parties to the agreement to arbitrate in the agreed manner between the parties, or in the absence of agreement, by certified or registered mail, return receipt requested and obtained, or by service as authorized for the commencement of a civil action. The notice must describe the nature of the controversy and the remedy sought.

(b) Unless a person objects for lack or insufficiency of notice under subsection (c) of section 15 of this act not later than the beginning of the arbitration hearing, the person by appearing at the hearing waives any objection to lack or insufficiency of notice.

Sec. 10. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (c) of this section, upon motion of a party to an agreement to arbitrate or to an arbitration proceeding, the court may order consolidation of separate arbitration proceedings as to all or some of the claims if:

(1) There are separate agreements to arbitrate or separate arbitration proceedings between the same persons or one of them is a party to a separate agreement to arbitrate or a separate arbitration proceeding with a third person;

(2) The claims subject to the agreements to arbitrate arise in substantial part from the same transaction or series of related transactions;

(3) The existence of a common issue of law or fact creates the possibility of conflicting decisions in the separate arbitration proceedings; and

(4) Prejudice resulting from a failure to consolidate is not outweighed by the risk of undue delay or prejudice to the rights of or hardship to parties opposing consolidation.

(b) The court may order consolidation of separate arbitration proceedings as to some claims and allow other claims to be resolved in separate arbitration proceedings.

(c) The court may not order consolidation of the claims of a party to an agreement to arbitrate if the agreement prohibits consolidation.

Sec. 11. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) If the parties to an agreement to arbitrate agree on a method for appointing an arbitrator, that method must be followed, unless the method fails. If the parties have not agreed on a method, the agreed method fails or an appointed arbitrator fails or is unable to act and a successor has not been appointed, the court, on motion of a party to the arbitration proceeding, shall appoint the arbitrator. An arbitrator so appointed has all the powers of an arbitrator designated in the agreement to arbitrate or appointed pursuant to the agreed method.

(b) An individual who has a known, direct and material interest in the outcome of the arbitration proceeding or a known, existing and substantial relationship with a party may not serve as an arbitrator required by an agreement to be neutral.

Sec. 12. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Before accepting appointment, an individual who is requested to serve as an arbitrator, after making a reasonable inquiry, shall disclose to all parties to the agreement to arbitrate and arbitration proceeding and to any other arbitrators any known facts that a reasonable person would consider likely to affect the impartiality of the arbitrator in the arbitration proceeding, including:

(1) A financial or personal interest in the outcome of the arbitration proceeding; and

(2) An existing or past relationship with any of the parties to the agreement to arbitrate or the arbitration proceeding, their counsel or representatives, a witness or another arbitrator.

(b) An arbitrator has a continuing obligation to disclose to all parties to the agreement to arbitrate and arbitration proceeding and to any other arbitrators any facts that the arbitrator learns after accepting appointment which a reasonable person would consider likely to affect the impartiality of the arbitrator.

(c) If an arbitrator discloses a fact required by subsection (a) or (b) of this section to be disclosed and a party timely objects to the appointment or continued service of the arbitrator based upon the fact disclosed, the objection may be a ground under subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 23 of this act for vacating an award made by the arbitrator.

(d) If the arbitrator did not disclose a fact as required by subsection (a) or (b) of this section, upon timely objection by a party, the court, under subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 23 of this act, may vacate an award.

(e) An arbitrator appointed as a neutral arbitrator who does not disclose a known, direct and material interest in the outcome of the arbitration proceeding or a known, existing and substantial relationship with a party is presumed to act with evident partiality under subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 23 of this act.

(f) If the parties to an arbitration proceeding agree to the procedures of an arbitration organization or any other procedures for challenges to arbitrators before an award is made, substantial compliance with those procedures is a condition precedent to a motion to vacate an award on that ground under subdivision (2) of subsection (a) of section 23 of this act.

Sec. 13. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) If there is more than one arbitrator, the powers of an arbitrator must be exercised by a majority of the arbitrators, but all of them shall conduct the hearing under subsection (c) of section 15 of this act.

Sec. 14. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An arbitrator or an arbitration organization acting in that capacity is immune from civil liability to the same extent as a judge of a court of this state acting in a judicial capacity.

(b) The immunity afforded by this section supplements any immunity under other law.

(c) The failure of an arbitrator to make a disclosure required by section 12 of this act does not cause any loss of immunity under this section.

(d) In a judicial, administrative or similar proceeding, an arbitrator or representative of an arbitration organization is not competent to testify and may not be required to produce records as to any statement, conduct, decision or ruling occurring during the arbitration proceeding to the same extent as a judge of a court of this state acting in a judicial capacity. This subsection does not apply:

(1) To the extent necessary to determine the claim of an arbitrator, arbitration organization or representative of the arbitration organization against a party to the arbitration proceeding; or

(2) To a hearing on a motion to vacate an award under subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of section 23 of this act if the movant establishes prima facie that a ground for vacating the award exists.

(e) If a person commences a civil action against an arbitrator, arbitration organization or representative of an arbitration organization arising from the services of the arbitrator, organization or representative or if a person seeks to compel an arbitrator or a representative of an arbitration organization to testify or produce records in violation of subsection (d) of this section, and the court decides that the arbitrator, arbitration organization or representative of an arbitration organization is immune from civil liability or that the arbitrator or representative of the organization is not competent to testify, the court shall award to the arbitrator, organization or representative reasonable attorney's fees and other reasonable expenses of litigation.

Sec. 15. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An arbitrator may conduct an arbitration in such manner as the arbitrator considers appropriate for a fair and expeditious disposition of the proceeding. The authority conferred upon the arbitrator includes the power to hold conferences with the parties to the arbitration proceeding before the hearing and, among other matters, determine the admissibility, relevance, materiality and weight of any evidence.

(b) An arbitrator may decide a request for summary disposition of a claim or particular issue:

(1) If all interested parties agree; or

(2) Upon request of one party to the arbitration proceeding if that party gives notice to all other parties to the proceeding and the other parties have a reasonable opportunity to respond.

(c) If an arbitrator orders a hearing, the arbitrator shall set a time and place and give notice of the hearing not less than five days before the hearing begins. Unless a party to the arbitration proceeding makes an objection to lack or insufficiency of notice not later than the beginning of the hearing, the party's appearance at the hearing waives the objection. Upon request of a party to the arbitration proceeding and for good cause shown, or upon the arbitrator's own initiative, the arbitrator may adjourn the hearing from time to time as necessary but may not postpone the hearing to a time later than that fixed by the agreement to arbitrate for making the award unless the parties to the arbitration proceeding consent to a later date. The arbitrator may hear and decide the controversy upon the evidence produced although a party who was duly notified of the arbitration proceeding did not appear. The court, on request, may direct the arbitrator to conduct the hearing promptly and render a timely decision.

(d) At a hearing under subsection (c) of this section, a party to the arbitration proceeding has a right to be heard, to present evidence material to the controversy and to cross-examine witnesses appearing at the hearing.

(e) If an arbitrator ceases or is unable to act during the arbitration proceeding, a replacement arbitrator must be appointed in accordance with section 11 of this act to continue the proceeding and to resolve the controversy.

Sec. 16. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) A party to an arbitration proceeding may be represented by a lawyer.

Sec. 17. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An arbitrator may issue a subpoena for the attendance of a witness and for the production of records and other evidence at any hearing and may administer oaths. A subpoena must be served in the manner for service of subpoenas in a civil action and, upon motion to the court by a party to the arbitration proceeding or the arbitrator, enforced in the manner for enforcement of subpoenas in a civil action.

(b) In order to make the proceedings fair, expeditious and cost effective, upon request of a party to or a witness in an arbitration proceeding, an arbitrator may permit a deposition of any witness to be taken for use as evidence at the hearing, including a witness who cannot be subpoenaed for or who is unable to attend a hearing. The arbitrator shall determine the conditions under which the deposition is taken.

(c) An arbitrator may permit such discovery as the arbitrator decides is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into account the needs of the parties to the arbitration proceeding and other affected persons and the desirability of making the proceeding fair, expeditious and cost effective.

(d) If an arbitrator permits discovery under subsection (c) of this section, the arbitrator may order a party to the arbitration proceeding to comply with the arbitrator's discovery-related orders, issue subpoenas for the attendance of a witness and for the production of records and other evidence at a discovery proceeding and take action against a noncomplying party to the extent a court could if the controversy were the subject of a civil action in this state.

(e) An arbitrator may issue a protective order to prevent the disclosure of privileged information, confidential information, trade secrets and other information protected from disclosure to the extent a court could if the controversy were the subject of a civil action in this state.

(f) All laws compelling a person under subpoena to testify and all fees for attending a judicial proceeding, a deposition or a discovery proceeding as a witness apply to an arbitration proceeding as if the controversy were the subject of a civil action in this state.

(g) The court may enforce a subpoena or discovery-related order for the attendance of a witness within this state and for the production of records and other evidence issued by an arbitrator in connection with an arbitration proceeding in another state upon conditions determined by the court so as to make the arbitration proceeding fair, expeditious and cost effective. A subpoena or discovery-related order issued by an arbitrator in another state must be served in the manner provided by law for service of subpoenas in a civil action in this state and, upon motion to the court by a party to the arbitration proceeding or the arbitrator, enforced in the manner provided by law for enforcement of subpoenas in a civil action in this state.

Sec. 18. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) If an arbitrator makes a preaward ruling in favor of a party to the arbitration proceeding, the party may request the arbitrator to incorporate the ruling into an award under section 19 of this act. A prevailing party may make a motion to the court for an expedited order to confirm the award under section 22 of this act, in which case the court shall summarily decide the motion. The court shall issue an order to confirm the award unless the court vacates, modifies or corrects the award under section 23 or 24 of this act.

Sec. 19. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An arbitrator shall make a record of an award. The record must be signed or otherwise authenticated by any arbitrator who concurs with the award. The arbitrator or the arbitration organization shall give notice of the award, including a copy of the award, to each party to the arbitration proceeding.

(b) An award must be made within the time specified by the agreement to arbitrate or, if not specified therein, within the time ordered by the court. The court may extend or the parties to the arbitration proceeding may agree in a record to extend the time. The court or the parties may do so within or after the time specified or ordered. A party waives any objection that an award was not timely made unless the party gives notice of the objection to the arbitrator before receiving notice of the award.

Sec. 20. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) On motion to an arbitrator by a party to an arbitration proceeding, the arbitrator may modify or correct an award:

(1) Upon a ground stated in subdivision (1) or (3) of subsection (a) of section 24 of this act;

(2) Because the arbitrator has not made a final and definite award upon a claim submitted by the parties to the arbitration proceeding; or

(3) To clarify the award.

(b) A motion under subsection (a) of this section shall be made and notice given to all parties within twenty days after the movant receives notice of the award.

(c) A party to the arbitration proceeding must give notice of any objection to the motion within ten days after receipt of the notice.

(d) If a motion to the court is pending under section 22, 23 or 24 of this act, the court may submit the claim to the arbitrator to consider whether to modify or correct the award:

(1) Upon a ground stated in subdivision (1) or (3) of subsection (a) of section 24 of this act;

(2) Because the arbitrator has not made a final and definite award upon a claim submitted by the parties to the arbitration proceeding; or

(3) To clarify the award.

(e) An award modified or corrected pursuant to this section is subject to subsection (a) of section 19 of this act and sections 22, 23 and 24 of this act.

Sec. 21. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An arbitrator may award punitive damages or other exemplary relief if such an award is authorized by law in a civil action involving the same claim and the evidence produced at the hearing justifies the award under the legal standards otherwise applicable to the claim.

(b) An arbitrator may award reasonable attorney's fees and other reasonable expenses of arbitration if such an award is authorized by law in a civil action involving the same claim or by the agreement of the parties to the arbitration proceeding.

(c) As to all remedies other than those authorized by subsections (a) and (b) of this section, an arbitrator may order such remedies as the arbitrator considers just and appropriate under the circumstances of the arbitration proceeding.

(d) An arbitrator's expenses and fees, together with other expenses, must be paid as provided in the award.

(e) If an arbitrator awards punitive damages or other exemplary relief under subsection (a) of this section, the arbitrator shall specify in the award the basis in fact justifying and the basis in law authorizing the award and state separately the amount of the punitive damages or other exemplary relief.

Sec. 22. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) After a party to an arbitration proceeding receives notice of an award, the party may make a motion to the court for an order confirming the award at which time the court shall issue a confirming order unless the award is modified or corrected pursuant to section 20 or 24 of this act or is vacated pursuant to section 23 of this act.

Sec. 23. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Upon motion to the court by a party to an arbitration proceeding, the court shall vacate an award made in the arbitration proceeding if:

(1) The award was procured by corruption, fraud or other undue means;

(2) There was: (A) Evident partiality by an arbitrator appointed as a neutral arbitrator; (B) corruption by an arbitrator; or (C) misconduct by an arbitrator prejudicing the rights of a party to the arbitration proceeding;

(3) An arbitrator refused to postpone the hearing upon showing of sufficient cause for postponement, refused to consider evidence material to the controversy or otherwise conducted the hearing contrary to section 15 of this act so as to prejudice substantially the rights of a party to the arbitration proceeding;

(4) An arbitrator exceeded the arbitrator's powers;

(5) There was no agreement to arbitrate, unless the person participated in the arbitration proceeding without raising the objection under subsection (c) of section 15 of this act not later than the beginning of the arbitration hearing; or

(6) The arbitration was conducted without proper notice of the initiation of an arbitration as required in section 9 of this act so as to prejudice substantially the rights of a party to the arbitration proceeding.

(b) A motion under this section must be filed within thirty days after the movant receives notice of the award pursuant to section 19 of this act or within thirty days after the movant receives notice of a modified or corrected award pursuant to section 20 of this act, unless the movant alleges that the award was procured by corruption, fraud or other undue means, in which case the motion must be made within thirty days after the ground is known or by the exercise of reasonable care would have been known by the movant.

(c) If the court vacates an award on a ground other than that set forth in subdivision (5) of subsection (a) of this section, it may order a rehearing. If the award is vacated on a ground stated in subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section, the rehearing must be before a new arbitrator. If the award is vacated on a ground stated in subdivision (3), (4) or (6) of subsection (a) of this section, the rehearing may be before the arbitrator who made the award or the arbitrator's successor. The arbitrator must render the decision in the rehearing within the same time as that provided in subsection (b) of section 19 of this act for an award.

(d) If the court denies a motion to vacate an award, it shall confirm the award unless a motion to modify or correct the award is pending.

Sec. 24. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Upon motion made within ninety days after the movant receives notice of the award pursuant to section 19 of this act or within ninety days after the movant receives notice of a modified or corrected award pursuant to section 20 of this act, the court shall modify or correct the award if:

(1) There was an evident mathematical miscalculation or an evident mistake in the description of a person, thing or property referred to in the award;

(2) The arbitrator has made an award on a claim not submitted to the arbitrator and the award may be corrected without affecting the merits of the decision upon the claims submitted; or

(3) The award is imperfect in a matter of form not affecting the merits of the decision on the claims submitted.

(b) If a motion made under subsection (a) of this section is granted, the court shall modify or correct and confirm the award as modified or corrected. Otherwise, unless a motion to vacate is pending, the court shall confirm the award.

(c) A motion to modify or correct an award pursuant to this section may be joined with a motion to vacate the award.

Sec. 25. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) Upon granting an order confirming an award, vacating an award without directing a rehearing, modifying an award or correcting an award, the court shall enter a judgment in conformity therewith. The judgment may be recorded, docketed and enforced as any other judgment in a civil action.

(b) A court may allow reasonable costs of the motion and subsequent judicial proceedings.

Sec. 26. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) A court of this state having jurisdiction over the controversy and the parties may enforce an agreement to arbitrate.

(b) An agreement to arbitrate providing for arbitration in this state confers exclusive jurisdiction on the court to enter judgment on an award under sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act.

Sec. 27. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) A motion pursuant to section 5 of this act shall be made in the court for the judicial district in which the agreement to arbitrate specifies the arbitration hearing is to be held or, if the hearing has been held, in the court for the judicial district in which it was held. Otherwise, the motion may be made in the court for any judicial district in which an adverse party resides or has a place of business or, if no adverse party has a residence or place of business in this state, in the court for any judicial district in this state. All subsequent motions shall be made in the court hearing the initial motion unless the court otherwise directs.

Sec. 28. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) (a) An appeal may be taken from: (1) An order denying a motion to compel arbitration; (2) an order granting a motion to stay arbitration; (3) an order confirming or denying confirmation of an award; (4) an order modifying or correcting an award; (5) an order vacating an award without directing a rehearing; or (6) a final judgment entered pursuant to sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act.

(b) An appeal under this section must be taken as from an order or a judgment in a civil action.

Sec. 29. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) In applying and construing the uniform provisions of sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act, consideration must be given to the need to promote uniformity of the law with respect to its subject matter among states that enact such uniform provisions.

Sec. 30. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) The provisions of sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act governing the legal effect, validity or enforceability of electronic records or signatures and of contracts formed or performed with the use of such records or signatures conform to the requirements of Section 102 of the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act.

Sec. 31. (NEW) (Effective October 1, 2018) The provisions of sections 1 to 30, inclusive, of this act do not affect an action or proceeding commenced or right accrued before October 1, 2018. Subject to section 3 of this act, an arbitration agreement made before October 1, 2018, is governed by sections 52-408 to 52-424, inclusive, of the general statutes.

Sec. 32. Section 37-3a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2018):

(a) Except as provided in sections 37-3b, 37-3c and 52-192a, interest at the rate of ten per cent a year, and no more, may be recovered and allowed in civil actions or arbitration proceedings under chapter 909 or sections 1 to 31, inclusive, of this act, including actions to recover money loaned at a greater rate, as damages for the detention of money after it becomes payable. Judgment may be given for the recovery of taxes assessed and paid upon the loan, and the insurance upon the estate mortgaged to secure the loan, whenever the borrower has agreed in writing to pay such taxes or insurance or both. Whenever the maker of any contract is a resident of another state or the mortgage security is located in another state, any obligee or holder of such contract, residing in this state, may lawfully recover any agreed rate of interest or damages on such contract until it is fully performed, not exceeding the legal rate of interest in the state where such contract purports to have been made or such mortgage security is located.

(b) In the case of a debt arising out of services provided at a hospital, prejudgment and postjudgment interest shall be no more than five per cent per year. The awarding of interest in such cases is discretionary.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 2

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 3

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 4

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 5

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 6

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 7

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 8

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 9

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 10

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 11

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 12

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 13

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 14

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 15

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 16

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 17

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 18

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 19

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 20

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 21

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 22

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 23

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 24

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 25

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 26

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 27

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 28

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 29

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 30

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 31

October 1, 2018

New section

Sec. 32

October 1, 2018

37-3a

JUD

Joint Favorable Subst.

 

The following Fiscal Impact Statement and Bill Analysis are prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and do not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.


OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The bill codifies arbitration rules and does not result in a fiscal impact as it involves arbitration between private parties.

In addition, the bill allows parties to file a motion for court relief. There is no impact to the Judicial Department as the number of motions is not anticipated to be great enough to need additional resources. The court system disposes over 650,000 cases annually.

The Out Years

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

OLR Bill Analysis

sHB 5258

AN ACT ADOPTING THE REVISED UNIFORM ARBITRATION ACT.

SUMMARY

This bill adopts the Revised Uniform Arbitration Act (RUAA). It codifies arbitration rules, standards, and common practices, some of which are currently not regulated by statute. It permits parties to waive or modify many of them, but specifically bars such waiver for other provisions or allows it only under specified circumstances ( 4). The bill covers:

The bill generally applies to agreements to arbitrate made on or after October 1, 2018. It does not repeal the existing law on arbitration proceedings (Chapter 909). It provides that proceedings governed by any other laws (including those on highway and public works contract arbitrations; state and municipal employees; teachers and superintendents; and new car lemon law disputes) related to an agreement to arbitrate, whenever entered, are subject to the existing arbitration law unless:

The bill also specifies that it does not affect an action or proceeding begun, or right accrued, before the bill takes effect ( 31).

The analysis below notes when the existing arbitration statutes contain provisions similar to the bill. It also indicates which of the bill's provisions cannot be waived or modified.

EFFECTIVE DATE: October 1, 2018

2 — NOTICE

The bill contains a general definition of notice. A person gives notice by taking reasonably necessary action to inform another in ordinary course, regardless of whether that person actually learns about it. A person has notice under this provision if he or she receives or learns about the notice.

Under the bill, a person receives notice when it is brought to the person's attention or is delivered to his or her home, office, or other location the person designated for delivery. “Persons” under the bill include people, government entities, businesses, and other legal and commercial entities.

Also, as described below, the bill has specific notice requirements, such as deadlines, in several of its provisions.

5 — APPLICATIONS FOR JUDICIAL RELIEF

The bill provides that applications for court relief under the bill, other than appeals, must be filed by motion in Superior Court and heard in the manner provided by law or court rule. Before a controversy arises, the parties may not waive or modify this provision.

The bill also specifies that, unless a civil action involving the agreement to arbitrate is pending, notice of an initial court motion under the bill must be served in the manner provided by law for service of a summons in a civil action. Otherwise, notice of a motion must be given in the manner provided by law or court rules for serving motions in pending cases.

6 — AGREEMENTS TO ARBITRATE

The bill specifies that an agreement in a record to submit to arbitration any existing or future controversy between the parties to the agreement is valid, enforceable, and irrevocable except upon a ground that exists at law or in equity to revoke a contract. The parties may not waive this provision before a controversy arises.

Existing law specifies permissible methods for creating arbitration agreements (e.g., written contracts or other written agreements to submit controversies to arbitration) and similarly permits legal and equitable principles for the avoidance of written contracts to be grounds for making arbitration agreements invalid, revocable, and unenforceable (CGS 52-408).

The bill directs courts to decide whether an agreement to arbitrate exists or a controversy is subject to an agreement to arbitrate. It directs arbitrators to decide whether a claim is ripe for arbitration and whether a contract containing an arbitration clause is enforceable.

The bill specifies that if a party to a court proceeding challenges the existence of an agreement to arbitrate, or claims that a controversy is not subject to the agreement, the arbitration may continue pending the court's final resolution of the issue, unless the court orders otherwise.

7 — MOTION TO COMPEL OR STAY ARBITRATION

Under the bill, if a party files a motion alleging another person's refusal to arbitrate under an agreement, the court must order the parties to arbitrate if (1) it finds there is an enforceable agreement and (2) the refusing party does not appear or does not oppose the motion. If the refusing party opposes the motion, the court must summarily decide the issue and order the parties to arbitrate, unless it finds that there is no enforceable arbitration agreement.

Under the bill, the court may not refuse to order arbitration because the claim subject to arbitration lacks merit or grounds for the claim have not been established.

Existing law specifies that (1) applications for orders to proceed with (i.e., compel) arbitration must be made by writ of summons and complaint and (2) complaint allegations not answered within five days of the complaint's return date are deemed denied by operation of law. The court must hear the matter either at a short calendar session, as a privileged case, or otherwise, in order to dispose of the case with the least possible delay (CGS 52-410).

The bill permits people to file motions when an arbitration proceeding has been threatened or initiated and they claim that there is no arbitration agreement. As with motions to compel, the court must decide this issue summarily. If it finds that there is an enforceable arbitration agreement, it must order arbitration to proceed.

If a proceeding involving a claim referable to arbitration under an alleged agreement to arbitrate is pending in court, the bill requires a motion under these provisions to be made in that court. Otherwise, a motion may be made in the appropriate court as provided below (see 27).

The bill provides that if a party makes a court motion to order arbitration, the court “on just terms” must stay any judicial proceeding that involves a claim alleged to be subject to the arbitration, until the court decides the matter.

Similarly, if a court orders arbitration, the court on just terms must stay any court proceeding that involves a claim subject to the arbitration. If some claims are not subject to arbitration, the court may order a partial stay, permitting the lawsuit to continue with respect to non-arbitrable issues.

The parties cannot waive or modify these provisions of the bill.

Existing law permits the filing of motions to stay court proceedings. It has a similar standard for granting them, but unlike the bill, specifically requires the moving party to show that he or she is ready and willing to proceed with the arbitration (CGS 52-409).

8 — PROVISIONAL REMEDIES

Under the bill, before an arbitrator is appointed and authorized to act, the court, upon motion and for good cause shown, may enter orders for provisional remedies. The court may do so to protect the effectiveness of the arbitration proceeding. The bill specifies that the court's authority is the same as if the controversy were the subject of a civil action.

After an arbitrator has been appointed and is authorized to act, the bill provides that he or she can order provisional remedies, including interim awards, as necessary to protect the effectiveness of the proceeding and to promote the fair and expeditious resolution of the controversy, to the same extent as if it were a court case.

Under the bill, a party to an arbitration proceeding can make a court motion for provisional remedies only if the matter is urgent and the arbitrator is not able to act in a timely manner or the arbitrator cannot provide an adequate remedy.

The bill specifies that a party filing a court motion for provisional relief does not waive his or her right to arbitration by doing so.

Parties to arbitration agreements can waive the bill's provisional remedy provisions, or make other agreements on such issues, only after a particular controversy arises.

Under existing law, courts have the authority to issue provisional remedies (i.e., pendente lite orders) throughout the arbitration process to protect parties' rights and secure enforcement if an award in their favor is ultimately issued and confirmed (CGS 52-422).

9 — INITIATION OF ARBITRATION

The bill creates an exception to the general rule for notices when a party seeks to initiate an arbitration proceeding. It specifies that unless the parties have agreed otherwise, they must do this by certified or registered mail, return receipt requested and obtained, or by a service method (such as personal delivery) permitted for beginning a civil lawsuit. The notice must describe the controversy and the requested remedy. It allows parties, by agreement, to use a different notice arrangement that is not unreasonably restrictive.

Parties who appear at the arbitration hearing waive objections based on lack or insufficiency of notice unless they object by the beginning of the hearing.

10 — CONSOLIDATION OF SEPARATE PROCEEDINGS

Unless the arbitration agreement prohibits it, the bill permits the court to order consolidation of separate arbitration proceedings as to all or some claims, upon motion of a party. The bill allows this if:

11-14 — ARBITRATORS

Appointing Arbitrators ( 11)

The bill permits parties to agree on a method for appointing an arbitrator or arbitration panel and requires them to follow it unless the method fails. But it specifies that the court must appoint arbitrators on motion of any party if (1) the parties cannot agree, (2) the agreed-upon method fails, or (3) an appointed arbitrator fails or is unable to act and a successor has not been appointed. Court-appointed arbitrators have all the powers of the arbitrator designated in the arbitration agreement or appointed pursuant to the agreed-upon method.

The bill's provisions are similar to existing law, although existing law specifies that such proceedings be initiated and decided in the same way as applications to proceed with arbitrations (CGS 52-411). Existing law also specifies that when a substitute or additional arbitrator is appointed to a case where evidence has already been presented, the matter must be reheard unless the parties agree in writing otherwise (CGS 52-414).

The bill prohibits a person with a known, direct, and material interest in the outcome of the proceeding, or a known, existing, and substantial relationship with a party, to serve as a neutral arbitrator.

Required Disclosures by Arbitrators ( 12)

Under the bill, before accepting appointment to serve as arbitrator, a person must make reasonable inquiry and disclose to all parties and to any other arbitrators any known facts that a reasonable person would consider likely to affect his or her impartiality. This includes any (1) financial or personal interest in the outcome and (2) existing or past relationship with any of the parties, their counsel or representatives, a witness, or another arbitrator.

Arbitrators must continue to disclose facts that they learn after accepting appointment that a reasonable person would consider likely to affect the arbitrator's impartiality.

The bill specifies that before a controversy arises, the parties may not agree to unreasonably restrict the right to disclosure by a neutral arbitrator under these provisions.

The bill allows a court, upon a timely objection, to vacate an arbitration award if the arbitrator (1) does not disclose a fact that he or she should have or (2) discloses such a fact and the party, based upon that disclosure, objects to the arbitrator's appointment or continued service.

The bill provides that a person appointed as a neutral arbitrator who does not disclose a known, direct, and material interest in the proceeding's outcome or a known, existing, and substantial relationship with a party is presumed to have acted with evident partiality. It also specifies that parties who have agreed to the procedures of an arbitration organization or any other procedures for challenges to arbitrators before an award is made must comply substantially with those before asking a court to vacate an award on evident partiality grounds.

Arbitration Panels – Decision by Majority ( 13)

Unless the parties agree otherwise, the bill specifies that when more than one arbitrator is designated to decide an issue (i.e., a panel), the decision of a majority must be obtained. But all must conduct an arbitration hearing. This is consistent with existing law (CGS 52-414).

Immunity and Related Issues ( 14)

The bill provides that an arbitrator and an arbitration organization, acting in those capacities, have the same immunity in civil lawsuits as Superior Court judges have when acting in their judicial capacity. (By law, judges are immune from liability for actions taken in their judicial capacity.) The bill specifies that this immunity supplements any immunity under other law. It also specifies that an arbitrator's failure to disclose required personal or financial information to the parties or other arbitrators does not strip him or her of this immunity.

The bill provides that arbitrators and arbitration organization representatives (1) are not competent to (i.e., cannot) testify in judicial, administrative, or similar proceedings and (2) may not be required to produce records concerning any statement, conduct, decision, or ruling occurring during the proceeding to the same extent as a judge acting in a judicial capacity. But this does not apply (1) if testimony or records are needed to determine an arbitrator's or arbitration organization's claim against a party to the proceeding (such as for unpaid fees) or (2) to a hearing on a motion to vacate when the moving party establishes a prima facie case (i.e., makes a preliminary showing) of arbitrator misconduct.

The bill requires courts to award arbitrators and arbitration organizations or their representatives attorney's fees and other reasonable costs of litigation when they are sued or a person seeks to compel them to testify or produce records but the court finds they are immune from civil liability or incompetent to testify.

These provisions of the bill cannot be waived or modified.

15-21 — ARBITRATION PROCEEDINGS

The bill permits arbitrators to handle proceedings in the manner they consider appropriate for a fair and expeditious disposition. They may hold conferences before the hearing and, among other things, determine the admissibility, relevance, material value, and weight of evidence ( 15(a)).

Summary Disposition ( 15(b))

Under the bill, arbitrators may decide claims or issues summarily (1) if all interested parties agree or (2) when one party requests this and gives notice of the request to all other parties and the other parties have a reasonable opportunity to respond.

Hearings ( 15(c) and (d))

Under the bill, if the arbitrator orders a hearing, he or she must set a time and place and give notice at least five days in advance. Unless a party objects to the lack or insufficiency of notice by the beginning of the hearing, his or her appearance at the hearing waives the objection. Existing statutes do not (1) specify how much advance notice parties must receive or (2) provide for the waiver of objections to the adequacy of hearing notices (CGS 52-413).

The bill specifies that a party to an arbitration hearing has a right to be heard, to present evidence material to the controversy, and to cross-examine witnesses.

It provides that hearings may be adjourned on the arbitrator's initiative or if any party requests it and shows good cause. It specifies that hearings cannot be postponed to a time later than that fixed by the arbitration agreement for making the award unless the parties consent. Existing law contains similar provisions (CGS 52-413).

The bill gives the arbitrator the authority to proceed and decide controversies upon the evidence presented even if a duly notified party does not appear. These provisions are consistent with existing law (CGS 52-414).

The bill specifies that a party may request the court to direct an arbitrator to conduct the hearing promptly and render a timely decision.

Existing law also specifies that an arbitrator, upon request of all parties, may request the court to give a decision on any question arising at the hearing, if the parties agree in writing to be bound by the court's decision (CGS 52-415).

Representation by Attorney ( 16)

The bill specifies that a lawyer may represent a party to an arbitration proceeding, but it permits post-controversy agreements to the contrary. The bill also allows employers and labor organizations to waive their right to a lawyer in a labor arbitration.

Subpoenas, Depositions, and Discovery ( 17)

As under existing law (CGS 52-412 & 514), the bill gives arbitrators the power to administer oaths and issue subpoenas directing witnesses to attend and produce documents at any hearing. It directs them to serve subpoenas in the same way as for civil actions, and it permits parties or the arbitrator to file a court motion and have a judge enforce the subpoena in the same manner as in a civil action.

Under existing law, both arbitrators and others legally authorized to issue subpoenas (such as a party's lawyer) may issue these subpoenas (CGS 52-412). It appears that, under the bill, only arbitrators may do so unless the parties agree otherwise after a controversy has arisen.

The bill permits arbitrators, in order to make the proceedings fair, expeditious, and cost-effective, to allow the taking of depositions for use as evidence at the hearing, including depositions of witnesses who cannot be subpoenaed for, or are unable to attend, a hearing. The arbitrator must specify the conditions for the depositions.

Parties can waive these rules or make other agreements after a controversy arises.

Under the bill, arbitrators may also permit the parties to engage in discovery that is appropriate under the circumstances. The arbitrator must consider the needs of the parties and other affected persons and the desirability of making the proceeding fair, expeditious, and cost-effective. When discovery is permitted, arbitrators can order parties to comply, issue discovery subpoenas, and take action against people who fail to comply to the extent a court could in a civil action.

The bill gives the arbitrator the authority to issue a protective order to prevent the disclosure of privileged or confidential information, trade secrets, and other information protected from disclosure to the extent a court could in a civil action. It specifies that all laws compelling a person under subpoena to testify and all witness fees applicable in court proceedings also apply to arbitrations.

The bill permits courts to enforce an arbitrator's subpoena or discovery-related orders for the attendance of witnesses within the state or for the production of records or other evidence in connection with out-of-state arbitrations, upon conditions the court sets to make the arbitration proceeding fair, expeditious, and cost-effective. Existing law does not directly reference out-of-state arbitrations (CGS 52-414).

The bill requires subpoenas or discovery-related orders from out-of-state arbitrators to be served in the manner provided under Connecticut law for serving subpoenas in a civil action. A party or the arbitrator can bring a motion to enforce the order in the same manner under law as for enforcement of subpoenas in civil actions in the state.

Pre-award Rulings ( 18)

Under the bill, if an arbitrator makes a pre-award ruling (i.e., an interim ruling disposing of only some issues or claims), the party may request the arbitrator to incorporate that ruling into the arbitration award. The prevailing party may file a court motion for an expedited order confirming the award, which the court must decide summarily. The court must issue an order to confirm the award unless the court vacates, modifies, or corrects it on grounds specified by the bill (see below, 23 and 24). These provisions of the bill cannot be waived or altered by agreement.

Awards ( 19)

Under the bill, the arbitrator must make a record of his or her award. Any arbitrator concurring with it must either sign or otherwise authenticate it. Either the arbitrator or the arbitration organization must give notice and a copy of the award to each party. The award must be made within the time specified by the agreement to arbitrate, or if not specified, within the time ordered by the court.

These provisions are generally consistent with existing law, although existing law specifies that when the parties' agreement is silent, the time limit is 30 days from the close of the hearing or from the date fixed for the submission of materials to the arbitrator (such as briefs) after the hearing concludes (CGS 52-416).

Under the bill, courts can extend the time for the arbitrator to make the award or the parties may agree in a record to extend it. The court or the parties may do so within or after the time specified or ordered. A party waives any objection that the award was not timely unless he or she objects to the arbitrator before receiving notice of the award. Existing law specifies that an award issued after time limits have expired has no legal effect unless the parties have agreed in writing to be bound by it (CGS 52-416).

Motions to the Arbitrator to Modify or Correct ( 20)

Under the bill, parties may ask the arbitrator by motion to modify or correct an award for the following reasons:

Motions must be filed within 20 days after the moving party receives notice of the award, and he or she must give notice to all parties within that time. Objections must be filed within 10 days of receipt.

When a party has filed a court motion to confirm, vacate, modify, or correct an award (see below, 22, 23, & 24), the bill allows the court to return the matter to the arbitrator to consider whether to modify or correct the award for any of the reasons specified above for such motions to the arbitrator. Parties cannot waive or vary this provision.

Remedies ( 21)

The bill permits arbitrators to award punitive damages or other exemplary relief when such an award is authorized by law in a civil action involving the same claim and the evidence justifies the award under the legal standards that otherwise apply. The award must specify the factual justification and legal authorization. It must also state separately the amount of the punitive damages or other exemplary relief. For all other remedies, the bill authorizes arbitrators to fashion such remedies as they consider just and appropriate under the circumstances.

The bill also permits arbitrators to award reasonable attorney's fees and other arbitration costs if this is authorized by law in a civil action involving the same claim or by the agreement of the parties. It specifies that an arbitrator's expenses and fees, together with other expenses, must be paid as provided in the award.

Existing law does not expressly address remedies. Parties may raise this issue in a motion to vacate, claiming that the arbitrator did not have the authority to order a particular remedy.

22-25 — POST-ARBITRATION COURT PROCEEDINGS

Motion to Confirm ( 22)

The bill permits parties to file court motions to confirm an arbitrator's award and requires courts to grant them unless the (1) arbitrator or court has modified or corrected the award or (2) court has vacated the award. This rule cannot be waived or modified.

Existing law requires such motions to be filed within one year of the award (CGS 52-417), but the bill does not specify a time limit. Existing law also requires parties applying for these orders (and for orders to modify or vacate an award) to include various specified documents with the motion (CGS 52-421).

Motion to Vacate ( 23)

The bill generally requires parties to file motions to vacate within 30 days of receiving notice of the original, modified, or corrected award. Where the moving party alleges that the award was procured by corruption, fraud, or other undue means, he or she must file the motion within 30 days after learning, or in the exercise of reasonable care would have learned, this information.

Under existing law, motions to vacate must be filed within 30 days of receipt of the notice of an award (CGS 52-420).

The bill requires courts to vacate an award if:

Existing law establishes the first four criteria as grounds for vacating an award. It also requires the court to vacate an award when an arbitrator carried out his or her authority so imperfectly that the resulting award is not mutual, final, or definite (CGS 52-418).

Under the bill, courts that grant a motion to vacate may order re-hearings unless the reason for vacating the award is lack of agreement to arbitrate. If the reason for vacating is the arbitrator's corruption, misconduct, or similar reasons under (1) or (2) above, a different arbitrator must conduct the rehearing. Otherwise, the court may permit the initial arbitrator to conduct the rehearing. Arbitrators must render decisions on rehearings within the deadlines for issuing an original award (see 19).

Under existing law, courts may direct rehearings when the time limits for issuing an award have not expired. They must do so in labor arbitration proceedings, regardless of these time limits, unless a party shows that there is no issue in dispute (CGS 52-418).

Under the bill, courts that deny a motion to vacate must simultaneously confirm the award, unless a motion to modify or correct has been filed within the bill's time limits.

The bill provides that the parties cannot waive or modify these provisions by agreement.

Motions to Modify or Correct ( 24)

Under the bill, courts must grant motions to modify or correct for some of the same reasons that arbitrators can grant such motions (i.e., evident mathematical errors or mistaken identifications in the award, and formal defects). Courts must also do so when the arbitrator makes an award on a claim that the parties did not submit to him or her, so long as the award can be corrected without affecting the merits of the arbitrator's decision on the submitted claims. Existing law contains similar provisions (CGS 52-419).

These court motions must be filed within 90 days of receiving notice of (1) the original award or (2) the award as modified or corrected by the arbitrator. If the court grants the motion, it must modify or correct the award and confirm it. If it denies the motion, it must confirm the award unless a motion to vacate is pending. The existing limitation period for filing these motions is 30 days from notice of the award (CGS 52-420).

Under the bill, courts may join proceedings arising from motions to vacate and to modify or correct.

The parties cannot waive or modify these provisions.

Judgment and Costs ( 25)

Similar to existing law (CGS 52-421), the bill provides that a court order confirming, modifying, or correcting an award, or vacating an award without directing a rehearing, may be enforced as any other judgment in a civil action.

The bill allows the court to award reasonable costs of the motion and subsequent court proceedings to the prevailing party.

The parties cannot waive or modify these provisions.

26 — COURT JURISDICTION

The Superior Court has exclusive jurisdiction to enter judgment on arbitration awards under the bill when the arbitration agreement provides for arbitration in the state. The Superior Court can enforce other arbitration agreements if it has jurisdiction over the dispute and the parties. Once a controversy arises, parties can make other agreements about jurisdiction.

27 — VENUE

Motions for judicial relief under the bill must be filed in (1) the judicial district where the arbitration agreement specifies the hearing will be held or (2) the district where it was held. Otherwise, motions may be filed (1) in any judicial district in Connecticut where an adverse party resides or has an office or (2) if no adverse party has a residence or office in Connecticut, in any Connecticut Superior Court. Unless the court directs otherwise, subsequent motions must be made in the court hearing the initial motion.

28 — APPEALS

Unless the parties have agreed otherwise in a particular controversy, the bill allows appeals to be taken from a Superior Court order:

It specifies that the same rules that apply to appeals from court orders or judgments in civil matters apply to these appeals.

Existing law does not address appeals from the denial of a motion to compel arbitration or the granting of a stay of arbitration proceedings (CGS 52-423).

29 — UNIFORM CONSTRUCTION

The bill directs that, in applying and construing this uniform act, consideration be given to the need to promote uniformity of the law with respect to its subject matter among states that enact it. This provision cannot be waived or modified by the parties.

30 — RELATIONSHIP TO E-SIGN ACT

The bill provides that its provisions governing the legal effect, validity, or enforceability of electronic records or signatures and of contracts that contain them conform with 102 of the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (P.L. 106-229), which regulates the use of electronic records and signatures in interstate and foreign commerce.

This provision cannot be waived or modified by the parties.

32 — INTEREST ON AWARDS

The bill sets the interest rate of 10% on arbitration awards owed but not paid. This is the same rate that applies to other types of arbitration awards and unpaid civil damages under existing law. The parties cannot waive or modify this provision.

COMMITTEE ACTION

Judiciary Committee

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

38

Nay

0

(04/02/2018)

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