The Revised Swiss International Arbitration Act – Key Changes and Developments

January 14, 2021

The Swiss International Arbitration legislation, reflected in Chapter 12 of the Swiss Private International Law Act, has gone over three decades without amendment since its enactment in 1987.

However, a revised version of the Act entered into force on January 1, 2021.

Absent express agreement, the revised Act applies exclusively to international arbitrations where, at the time of the conclusion of the arbitration agreement, at least one of the parties has its domicile or seat outside of Switzerland. While the key features of the existing Act remain largely intact, the revised Act is a welcome update that modernizes and clarifies the existing provisions. The revisions also incorporate and reflect the well-developed case law of the Swiss Federal Tribunal in the field of arbitration. Overall, the revised Act contributes to the continuing attractiveness of Switzerland as a leading seat for international arbitration proceedings.

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