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Revised Swiss Arbitration Act to Come Into Force on 1 January 2021

17.12.2020 -

Following the thorough process of review and parliamentary adoption, the revision of Chapter 12 of the Swiss Private International Law Act (PILA) has concluded and the new legislation will be in force as of 1 January 2021. The act was adopted by the Swiss Parliament on 19 June 2020. 


ASA, the Swiss Arbitration Association, which has actively participated in the revision process, in keeping with its past practice, will be making available English translations of the new legislation on its website before the revised Chap. 12 PILA becomes effective. One of the innovations under the new law is that written submissions may be filed in English before the Swiss Federal Supreme Court in setting aside proceedings, thereby increasing the need for a reliable reference.


As ASA previously reported, the revision as a whole ensures that Switzerland's International Arbitration Act maintains its position as one of the internationally most regarded arbitration laws of high and innovative quality. It combines party autonomy with the guarantee of a reliable judicial system. These qualities also explain why Chapter 12 PILA is fit to apply to many different types of arbitration such as ad hoc proceedings, institutional arbitration, sports arbitration, investment arbitration, to name only a few. The revision relies on these essential strengths and modernises the provisions of Chapter 12 on a selective basis. In particular, it transposes the case law which the Swiss Federal Supreme Court has developed over the last three decades since the PILA came into force in 1989. The revision also aims at further strengthening the position of Chapter 12 as a "stand-alone" international arbitration act by reducing the references to other laws to a minimum. The revision brings Swiss arbitration law up to date while retaining its conciseness and flexibility.

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