American Arbitration Association Revises Its Rules and Procedures for the Construction Industry

Effective July 1, 2015, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) revised its Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures for the Construction Industry to directly address the preferences of users for a more streamlined, cost-effective, and tightly managed alternative dispute resolution process that avoids the high costs of litigation. The revisions include a mediation step in all cases with claims that exceed $100,000 (with the ability to opt out), additional time limits and filing requirements to address the efficiency of arbitration, greater controls to limit the exchange of information, and new preliminary hearing rules to help ensure that arbitration is efficient from the beginning of the process. The revisions also include an emergency measure to ensure that the AAA appoints an emergency arbitrator within one day, to rule on requests for emergency relief in contracts that have been entered into on or after July 1, 2015. The revised Rules and Procedures can be found here.

The AAA is a not-for-profit organization, that since its founding in 1926, has offered a broad range of dispute resolution services that generally conclude with an award or other resolution of conflicts outside of traditional court proceedings. The AAA, along with other alternative dispute resolution providers, has come under fire in recent years as the cost of arbitration and complaints about the effectiveness of arbitration proceedings has risen. BrigliaMcLaughlin is encouraged that the AAA's rule revisions will address some of the concerns raised by the construction industry.

Categories: Legal Updates