LCIA issues revised Schedule of Costs and Guidance Note

On 7 November 2023, the LCIA published a revised Schedule of Costs which will come into effect on 1 December 2023 and will apply to arbitrations registered on or after that date. Whilst the Registration Fee remains unchanged, the hourly rates of the Tribunal, tribunal secretaries and of the LCIA Secretariat have increased, as have the fees for Emergency Arbitration. The LCIA has also updated its Guidance Note for Parties and Arbitrators to bring it in line with the 2020 LCIA Rules. The updated Note provides helpful new guidance for parties in a number of important respects, including on consolidation, joinder, early determination, challenges to arbitrators and the disclosure by arbitrators of potential conflicts of interest. The LCIA has also published new terms and conditions for other services provided by it (for example services in UNCITRAL arbitrations).

Revised Schedule of Costs

The LCIA has published a revised Schedule of Costs which will apply to LCIA arbitrations registered on or after 1 December 2023. For arbitrations commenced prior to that date, previous Schedules of Costs will continue to apply.

  • The Registration Fee remains unchanged at £1,950, however the following fees have increased:
  • The maximum hourly rate of the Tribunal has increased from £500/hr to £650/hr, an increase of 30%. The LCIA noted in its announcement that this increase reflects the LCIA’s broad caseload, offers the LCIA more flexibility and ensures arbitrators’ rates remain competitive.
  • The LCIA’s administrative charges (being the hourly rates charged by the Secretariat) have increased. According to its announcement, this reflects increased costs due to inflation.
  • The hourly rates chargeable by tribunal secretaries have increased to £100 to £250/hr (up from £75 to £175/hr).
  • The application fee for the appointment of an Emergency Arbitrator has increased to £10,000 (up from £9,000), and the Emergency Arbitrator’s fee has increased to £25,000 (up from £22,000).

The increase in the maximum hourly rate for the Tribunal was likely intended to address concerns that the hourly rate of £500 was too low for arbitrators sitting in complex and high value arbitrations. Whilst the increase is not insignificant, the LCIA’s fee-structure will continue to remain competitive in comparison to other institutions. This is particularly so for high-value cases, given the LCIA’s relatively low rates for administrative support and the Registration Fee, and its continued eschewal of a system which sets fees by reference to the amount in dispute.

Updated Guidance Note for Parties and Arbitrators

The LCIA has also published an updated Guidance Note for Parties and Arbitrators, which consolidates the three previously separate LCIA Guidance Notes (i.e. the notes for Parties, for Arbitrators and on Emergency Procedures) and brings the guidance in line with the 2020 LCIA Rules and 2023 Schedule of Costs.

The new Note largely reiterates the guidance provided in the previous Notes but helpful new guidance has been added in a number of respects, including:

  • More detailed guidance for arbitrators on the disclosure of potential conflicts of interest
  • More detailed guidance on the process of challenging arbitrators
  • A new policy on the receipt of funds, whereby the LCIA will only accept payments from an account held in the name of a party to the arbitration or from an account held in the name of a person or law firm authorised to act on legal matters for the party and who is on the record in the arbitration
  • Guidance on consolidation, concurrent arbitrations, joinder, expedition and early determination
  • Guidance on the correction of Awards and issuing additional Awards
  • Guidance on the filing of composite Requests and Responses
  • Guidance on cases involving potential sanctions issues, including information on the General Licence obtained by the LCIA from OFSI under the Russia and Belarus Regulations

New terms and conditions for other services

The LCIA has also published new terms and conditions for other services provided by the LCIA, being: (i) fundholding; (ii) holding funds by way of security; (iii) the provision of services in UNCITRAL arbitrations; and (iv) appointment-only services. The new terms will come into effect from 1 December 2023.

Director General of the LCIA, Professor Dr Jacomijn van Haersolte-van Hof, has explained that the new terms and conditions “will provide greater certainty and clarity as to the basis on which the LCIA offers other services to users” and “reflect in part the reality of a stricter regulatory and compliance environment”.

For more, and links to the materials discussed, see the LCIA’s announcement here.