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Procedure and evidence
Flexibility and privacy are among the main advantages of arbitration over litigation. Unlike court proceedings, there are no formalised rules of practice binding the parties or the arbitrators: procedure is governed by the parties’ agreement and certain essential requirements of procedural fairness. Arbitration should therefore be able to provide the most efficient and convenient procedure for resolution of any particular dispute. However, it can become unduly lengthy and expensive if heavy interlocutory disputes arise or unnecessary evidence is introduced. A fine balance must be maintained between conducting an arbitration efficiently and preserving each party’s right to a fair opportunity to present its case and meet the other side’s case. This balancing exercise forms the basis of the central mandatory provisions of the 1996 Act.
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