Thursday, October 05, 2006

Is arbitration confidential in Brazil?

The Brazilian Arbitration Act contains no provision regarding the confidentiality of arbitration proceedings. Yet, some Brazilian scholars believe that there is an implicit obligation of confidentiality under Brazilian law (I believe that arbitration is private, but not necessarily confidential).

To date, Brazilian courts have not dealt with the question on whether there is an implicit obligation —or implied duty— of confidentiality in arbitration proceedings.

More certainty regarding the position of Brazilian law vis-à-vis the confidentiality of arbitration, only when a Brazilian court issues a decision regarding this matter (either endorsing or opposing the views of those scholars who believe arbitration is confidential —albeit the absence of an express provision in that regard).

Until such time, it is recommended that the parties either insert a provision of confidentiality in their arbitration agreement —or choose arbitral rules expressly providing for confidentiality— if they want guarantee that aspects of an eventual arbitration between them will be kept confidential by all the parties involved in the proceedings, during the proceedings and after the arbitral awards are issued.

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