Iowa Arbitration Association  

Rules of Practice and Procedure


1. Initiation of Proceeding

Parties to any existing dispute may commence arbitration under these rules by filing with Iowa Arbitration Association LLC d/b/a Iowa Arbitrators a petition for arbitration with an attached written agreement to arbitrate or a joint arbitration submission agreement. The petition or agreement shall contain a statement of the nature of the dispute, the names and addresses of all parties, any claims and counterclaims, the amount involved, the remedy sought, and the hearing locale requested, together with the appropriate filing fee. Unless the parties state otherwise in the submission, all claims and counterclaims will be deemed denied by the other party.

2. Preliminary Conference
a. Iowa Arbitrators will schedule as soon as practicable a preliminary conference between the arbitrator and the parties and/or their representatives. The preliminary conference may be conducted by telephone at the arbitrator’s discretion.
b. During the preliminary conference, the parties and the arbitrator should discuss the future conduct of the case, including clarification of the issues and claims, the exchange of information, a schedule for the hearing, and any other preliminary matters.
3. Exchange of Information
a. At the request of any party or at the discretion of the arbitrator, consistent with the expedited nature of arbitration, the arbitrator may direct:
(1) The production of documents and other information, and
(2) The identification of any witnesses to be called.
b. At least five business days prior to the hearing, the parties shall exchange copies of all exhibits they intend to submit at the hearing.
c. The arbitrator is authorized to resolve any disputes concerning the exchange of information.
4. Date, Time, and Place of Hearing
After consultation with the parties, the arbitrator shall set the date, time, and place for each hearing. The parties shall cooperate in scheduling the earliest practicable date and in adhering to the established hearing schedule.
5. Hearing
Unless otherwise provided by the parties’ agreement:

a. The arbitrator may adjourn the hearing as necessary and, on request of a party and for good cause, or upon the arbitrator’s own motion, may postpone the hearing. If the parties have fixed a time for making the award in their agreement, any postponement shall not extend beyond that time unless the parties agree to such an extension.

b. The parties are entitled to be heard and may cross-examine witnesses appearing at the hearing. The arbitrator may hear and determine the controversy upon the evidence produced even if a party duly notified fails to appear.

c. The parties may offer such evidence as is pertinent and material to the controversy and shall produce such evidence as the arbitrator may deem necessary to an understanding and determination of the dispute. Conformity to formal rules of evidence shall not be necessary.

d. The hearing shall be conducted by all selected arbitrators. If, during the course of the hearing, one arbitrator from a panel for any reason ceases to act, the remaining arbitrator or arbitrators may continue with the hearing and the determination of the controversy.

6. Representation
A party has the right to be represented by an attorney at any proceeding or hearing under these rules

7. Witnesses, Subpoenas, and Depositions

a. The arbitrator may issue subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and for the production of books, records, documents, and other evidence, and may administer oaths. Subpoenas shall be served, and upon application to a court of competent jurisdiction by a party or the arbitrator, enforced in the manner provided by law for the service and enforcement of subpoenas in a civil action.

b. On application of a party and for use as evidence, the arbitrator may permit a deposition to be taken, in the manner and upon the terms designated by the arbitrator, of a witness who cannot be subpoenaed or is unable to attend the hearing.

c. All provisions of the law compelling a person under subpoena to testify are applicable.

d. Unless otherwise agreed, fees for attendance as a witness shall be the same as for a witness in a court of competent jurisdiction.

8. Award
a. The award shall be in writing and signed by any presiding arbitrator joining in the award. The arbitrator shall send a copy to each attorney or unrepresented party by mail or as otherwise provided in the agreement.

b. A party waives the objection that an award was not made within the proper time unless the party notifies the arbitrator of the party’s objection before the award is received.

c. Unless otherwise agreed, an award shall be made within thirty days after the arbitration hearing or the submission of any post-hearing evidence or briefing, whichever is later.

9. Fees of Arbitration
Unless otherwise provided in the agreement to arbitrate or by law, the arbitrator’s expenses and fees and any other expenses incurred in the conduct of the arbitration shall be paid as provided in the award. Attorney’s fees, however, may be awarded only as provided by the arbitration agreement or as authorized by law.

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