The Law Governing the Performance of Arbitral Awards

20 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2008

See all articles by Gilles Cuniberti

Gilles Cuniberti

University of Luxembourg; Universite du Luxembourg - Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance

Date Written: November 11, 2008


In most cases, awards are either paid in a way which satisfies the award creditor, or not paid at all. When awards are paid to the satisfaction of all involved parties, no issue arises. When the award debtor does not want to pay, the award creditor may seek enforcement of the award. There are, however, instances where performance may raise issues irrespective of enforcement. First, the award debtor may wish to perform the award in a way which does not satisfy the award creditor. Second, the debtor may argue that an event has occurred that entitles him not to pay the award. In these cases, it is necessary to determine which rules govern, but there are no enforcement proceedings involved, or at least not necessarily.

This paper explores the choice of law issues raised by the performance of arbitral awards. It identifies the different approaches to the problem depending on the various conceptions of international arbitration and how the issues under scrutiny are traditionally characterized for choice of law purposes. It then surveys the different solutions adopted by courts.

Keywords: Arbitration, Arbitral Awards, Enforcement, Choice of law, Conflict of laws

Suggested Citation

Cuniberti, Gilles, The Law Governing the Performance of Arbitral Awards (November 11, 2008). University of Luxembourg Law Working Paper No. 2009-04. Available at SSRN: or

Gilles Cuniberti (Contact Author)

University of Luxembourg ( email )

Faculté de Droit
4, rue Alphonse Weicker
Luxembourg, 2721

Universite du Luxembourg - Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance ( email )

4 rue Alphonse Weicker
Luxembourg, L-2721

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