2005 Florida COMMERCIAL RELATIONS ARBITRATION CODEChapter 682

CHAPTER 682

ARBITRATION CODE

682.01  Florida arbitration code.

682.02  Arbitration agreements made valid, irrevocable, and enforceable; scope.

682.03  Proceedings to compel and to stay arbitration.

682.04  Appointment of arbitrators by court.

682.05  Majority action by arbitrators.

682.06  Hearing.

682.07  Representation by attorney.

682.08  Witnesses, subpoenas, depositions.

682.09  Award.

682.10  Change of award by arbitrators or umpire.

682.11  Fees and expenses of arbitration.

682.12  Confirmation of an award.

682.13  Vacating an award.

682.14  Modification or correction of award.

682.15  Judgment or decree on award.

682.16  Judgment roll, docketing.

682.17  Application to court.

682.18  Court; definition; jurisdiction.

682.19  Venue.

682.20  Appeals.

682.21  Law not retroactive.

682.22  Severability.

682.01  Florida arbitration code.--Sections 682.01-682.22 may be cited as the "Florida Arbitration Code."

History.--s. 22, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.10.

682.02  Arbitration agreements made valid, irrevocable, and enforceable; scope.--Two or more parties may agree in writing to submit to arbitration any controversy existing between them at the time of the agreement, or they may include in a written contract a provision for the settlement by arbitration of any controversy thereafter arising between them relating to such contract or the failure or refusal to perform the whole or any part thereof. This section also applies to written interlocal agreements under ss. 163.01 and 373.1962 in which two or more parties agree to submit to arbitration any controversy between them concerning water use permit applications and other matters, regardless of whether or not the water management district with jurisdiction over the subject application is a party to the interlocal agreement or a participant in the arbitration. Such agreement or provision shall be valid, enforceable, and irrevocable without regard to the justiciable character of the controversy; provided that this act shall not apply to any such agreement or provision to arbitrate in which it is stipulated that this law shall not apply or to any arbitration or award thereunder.

History.--s. 1, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 3, ch. 98-402.

Note.--Former s. 57.11.

682.03  Proceedings to compel and to stay arbitration.--

(1)  A party to an agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law claiming the neglect or refusal of another party thereto to comply therewith may make application to the court for an order directing the parties to proceed with arbitration in accordance with the terms thereof. If the court is satisfied that no substantial issue exists as to the making of the agreement or provision, it shall grant the application. If the court shall find that a substantial issue is raised as to the making of the agreement or provision, it shall summarily hear and determine the issue and, according to its determination, shall grant or deny the application.

(2)  If an issue referable to arbitration under an agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law becomes involved in an action or proceeding pending in a court having jurisdiction to hear an application under subsection (1), such application shall be made in said court. Otherwise and subject to s. 682.19, such application may be made in any court of competent jurisdiction.

(3)  Any action or proceeding involving an issue subject to arbitration under this law shall be stayed if an order for arbitration or an application therefor has been made under this section or, if the issue is severable, the stay may be with respect thereto only. When the application is made in such action or proceeding, the order for arbitration shall include such stay.

(4)  On application the court may stay an arbitration proceeding commenced or about to be commenced, if it shall find that no agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law exists between the party making the application and the party causing the arbitration to be had. The court shall summarily hear and determine the issue of the making of the agreement or provision and, according to its determination, shall grant or deny the application.

(5)  An order for arbitration shall not be refused on the ground that the claim in issue lacks merit or bona fides or because any fault or grounds for the claim sought to be arbitrated have not been shown.

History.--s. 2, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.12.

682.04  Appointment of arbitrators by court.--If an agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law provides a method for the appointment of arbitrators or an umpire, this method shall be followed. In the absence thereof, or if the agreed method fails or for any reason cannot be followed, or if an arbitrator or umpire who has been appointed fails to act and his or her successor has not been duly appointed, the court, on application of a party to such agreement or provision shall appoint one or more arbitrators or an umpire. An arbitrator or umpire so appointed shall have like powers as if named or provided for in the agreement or provision.

History.--s. 3, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 724, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.13.

682.05  Majority action by arbitrators.--The powers of the arbitrators may be exercised by a majority of their number unless otherwise provided in the agreement or provision for arbitration.

History.--s. 4, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.14.

682.06  Hearing.--Unless otherwise provided by the agreement or provision for arbitration:

(1)(a)  The arbitrators shall appoint a time and place for the hearing and cause notification to the parties to be served personally or by registered or certified mail not less than 5 days before the hearing. Appearance at the hearing waives a party's right to such notice. The arbitrators may adjourn their hearing from time to time upon their own motion and shall do so upon the request of any party to the arbitration for good cause shown, provided that no adjournment or postponement of their hearing shall extend beyond the date fixed in the agreement or provision for making the award unless the parties consent to a later date. An umpire authorized to hear and decide the cause upon failure of the arbitrators to agree upon an award shall, in the course of his or her jurisdiction, have like powers and be subject to like limitations thereon.

(b)  The arbitrators, or umpire in the course of his or her jurisdiction, may hear and decide the controversy upon the evidence produced notwithstanding the failure or refusal of a party duly notified of the time and place of the hearing to appear. The court on application may direct the arbitrators, or the umpire in the course of his or her jurisdiction, to proceed promptly with the hearing and making of the award.

(2)  The parties are entitled to be heard, to present evidence material to the controversy and to cross-examine witnesses appearing at the hearing.

(3)  The hearing shall be conducted by all of the arbitrators but a majority may determine any question and render a final award. An umpire authorized to hear and decide the cause upon the failure of the arbitrators to agree upon an award shall sit with the arbitrators throughout their hearing but shall not be counted as a part of their quorum or in the making of their award. If, during the course of the hearing, an arbitrator for any reason ceases to act, the remaining arbitrator, arbitrators or umpire appointed to act as neutrals may continue with the hearing and determination of the controversy.

History.--s. 5, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 725, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.15.

682.07  Representation by attorney.--A party has the right to be represented by an attorney at any arbitration proceeding or hearing under this law. A waiver thereof prior to the proceeding or hearing is ineffective.

History.--s. 6, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.16.

682.08  Witnesses, subpoenas, depositions.--

(1)  Arbitrators, or an umpire authorized to hear and decide the cause upon failure of the arbitrators to agree upon an award, in the course of her or his jurisdiction, may issue subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and for the production of books, records, documents and other evidence, and shall have the power to administer oaths. Subpoenas so issued shall be served, and upon application to the court by a party to the arbitration or the arbitrators, or the umpire, enforced in the manner provided by law for the service and enforcement of subpoenas in a civil action.

(2)  On application of a party to the arbitration and for use as evidence, the arbitrators, or the umpire in the course of her or his jurisdiction, may permit a deposition to be taken, in the manner and upon the terms designated by them or her or him of a witness who cannot be subpoenaed or is unable to attend the hearing.

(3)  All provisions of law compelling a person under subpoena to testify are applicable.

(4)  Fees for attendance as a witness shall be the same as for a witness in the circuit court.

History.--s. 7, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 726, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.17.

682.09  Award.--

(1)  The award shall be in writing and shall be signed by the arbitrators joining in the award or by the umpire in the course of his or her jurisdiction. They or he or she shall deliver a copy to each party to the arbitration either personally or by registered or certified mail, or as provided in the agreement or provision.

(2)  An award shall be made within the time fixed therefor by the agreement or provision for arbitration or, if not so fixed, within such time as the court may order on application of a party to the arbitration. The parties may, by written agreement, extend the time either before or after the expiration thereof. Any objection that an award was not made within the time required is waived unless the objecting party notifies the arbitrators or umpire in writing of his or her objection prior to the delivery of the award to him or her.

History.--s. 8, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 727, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.18.

682.10  Change of award by arbitrators or umpire.--On application of a party to the arbitration, or if an application to the court is pending under s. 682.12, s. 682.13 or s. 682.14, on submission to the arbitrators, or to the umpire in the case of an umpire's award, by the court under such conditions as the court may order, the arbitrators or umpire may modify or correct the award upon the grounds stated in s. 682.14(1)(a) and (c) or for the purpose of clarifying the award. The application shall be made within 20 days after delivery of the award to the applicant. Written notice thereof shall be given forthwith to the other party to the arbitration, stating that he or she must serve his or her objections thereto, if any, within 10 days from the notice. The award so modified or corrected is subject to the provisions of ss. 682.12-682.14.

History.--s. 9, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 728, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.19.

682.11  Fees and expenses of arbitration.--Unless otherwise provided in the agreement or provision for arbitration, the arbitrators' and umpire's expenses and fees, together with other expenses, not including counsel fees, incurred in the conduct of the arbitration, shall be paid as provided in the award.

History.--s. 10, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.20.

682.12  Confirmation of an award.--Upon application of a party to the arbitration, the court shall confirm an award, unless within the time limits hereinafter imposed grounds are urged for vacating or modifying or correcting the award, in which case the court shall proceed as provided in ss. 682.13 and 682.14.

History.--s. 11, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.21.

682.13  Vacating an award.--

(1)  Upon application of a party, the court shall vacate an award when:

(a)  The award was procured by corruption, fraud or other undue means.

(b)  There was evident partiality by an arbitrator appointed as a neutral or corruption in any of the arbitrators or umpire or misconduct prejudicing the rights of any party.

(c)  The arbitrators or the umpire in the course of her or his jurisdiction exceeded their powers.

(d)  The arbitrators or the umpire in the course of her or his jurisdiction refused to postpone the hearing upon sufficient cause being shown therefor or refused to hear evidence material to the controversy or otherwise so conducted the hearing, contrary to the provisions of s. 682.06, as to prejudice substantially the rights of a party.

(e)  There was no agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law, unless the matter was determined in proceedings under s. 682.03 and unless the party participated in the arbitration hearing without raising the objection.

But the fact that the relief was such that it could not or would not be granted by a court of law or equity is not ground for vacating or refusing to confirm the award.

(2)  An application under this section shall be made within 90 days after delivery of a copy of the award to the applicant, except that, if predicated upon corruption, fraud or other undue means, it shall be made within 90 days after such grounds are known or should have been known.

(3)  In vacating the award on grounds other than those stated in paragraph (1)(e), the court may order a rehearing before new arbitrators chosen as provided in the agreement or provision for arbitration or by the court in accordance with s. 682.04, or, if the award is vacated on grounds set forth in paragraphs (1)(c) and (d), the court may order a rehearing before the arbitrators or umpire who made the award or their successors appointed in accordance with s. 682.04. The time within which the agreement or provision for arbitration requires the award to be made is applicable to the rehearing and commences from the date of the order therefor.

(4)  If the application to vacate is denied and no motion to modify or correct the award is pending, the court shall confirm the award.

History.--s. 12, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 729, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.22.

682.14  Modification or correction of award.--

(1)  Upon application made within 90 days after delivery of a copy of the award to the applicant, the court shall modify or correct the award when:

(a)  There is an evident miscalculation of figures or an evident mistake in the description of any person, thing or property referred to in the award.

(b)  The arbitrators or umpire have awarded upon a matter not submitted to them or him or her and the award may be corrected without affecting the merits of the decision upon the issues submitted.

(c)  The award is imperfect as a matter of form, not affecting the merits of the controversy.

(2)  If the application is granted, the court shall modify and correct the award so as to effect its intent and shall confirm the award as so modified and corrected. Otherwise, the court shall confirm the award as made.

(3)  An application to modify or correct an award may be joined in the alternative with an application to vacate the award.

History.--s. 13, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 730, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.23.

682.15  Judgment or decree on award.--Upon the granting of an order confirming, modifying or correcting an award, judgment or decree shall be entered in conformity therewith and be enforced as any other judgment or decree. Costs of the application and of the proceedings subsequent thereto, and disbursements may be awarded by the court.

History.--s. 14, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.24.

682.16  Judgment roll, docketing.--

(1)  On entry of judgment or decree, the clerk shall prepare the judgment roll consisting, to the extent filed, of the following:

(a)  The agreement or provision for arbitration and each written extension of the time within which to make the award;

(b)  The award;

(c)  A copy of the order confirming, modifying or correcting the award; and

(d)  A copy of the judgment or decree.

(2)  The judgment or decree may be docketed as if rendered in a civil action.

History.--s. 15, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.25.

682.17  Application to court.--Except as otherwise provided, an application to the court under this law shall be by motion and shall be heard in the manner and upon the notice provided by law or rule of court for the making and hearing of motions. Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, notice of an initial application for an order shall be served in the manner provided by law for the service of a summons in an action.

History.--s. 16, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.26.

682.18  Court; definition; jurisdiction.--

(1)  The term "court" means any court of competent jurisdiction of this state. The making of an agreement or provision for arbitration subject to this law and providing for arbitration in this state shall, whether made within or outside this state, confer jurisdiction on the court to enforce the agreement or provision under this law, to enter judgment on an award duly rendered in an arbitration thereunder and to vacate, modify or correct an award rendered thereunder for such cause and in the manner provided in this law.

(2)  Any judgment entered upon an award by a court of competent jurisdiction of any state, territory, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico or foreign country shall be enforceable by application as provided in s. 682.17 and regardless of the time when said award may have been made.

History.--s. 17, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.27.

682.19  Venue.--Any application under this law may be made to the court of the county in which the other party to the agreement or provision for arbitration resides or has a place of business, or, if she or he has no residence or place of business in this state, then to the court of any county. All applications under this law subsequent to an initial application shall be made to the court hearing the initial application unless it shall order otherwise.

History.--s. 18, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254; s. 731, ch. 97-102.

Note.--Former s. 57.28.

682.20  Appeals.--

(1)  An appeal may be taken from:

(a)  An order denying an application to compel arbitration made under s. 682.03.

(b)  An order granting an application to stay arbitration made under s. 682.03(2)-(4).

(c)  An order confirming or denying confirmation of an award.

(d)  An order modifying or correcting an award.

(e)  An order vacating an award without directing a rehearing.

(f)  A judgment or decree entered pursuant to the provisions of this law.

(2)  The appeal shall be taken in the manner and to the same extent as from orders or judgments in a civil action.

History.--s. 19, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.29.

682.21  Law not retroactive.--This law applies only to agreements and provisions for arbitration made subsequent to the taking effect of this law.

History.--s. 20, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.30.

682.22  Severability.--If any provision of this chapter or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this chapter. In any action or proceeding in any state or territory of the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or any foreign country, this chapter and any agreement or provision to arbitrate made thereunder shall be classified as substantive within the meaning of that term in the conflict of laws; provided, however, that such substantive classification shall never be intended to derogate the public policy of such other jurisdiction.

History.--s. 21, ch. 57-402; s. 12, ch. 67-254.

Note.--Former s. 57.31.
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