Kraków Court of Appeal order
dated 24 October 2013
Case no. I ACz 1722/13
Summary by arbitraz.laszczuk.pl:
A limited-liability company obtained an award against the individual W.B. and sought enforcement of the award from the Kraków Regional Court. The court found that the grounds for issuance an enforcement clause for the award were met, i.e. the award was capable of enforcement by way of execution and the applicant had submitted the required documentation, and there were no grounds for denying enforcement. The court issued the enforcement clause accordingly.
On interlocutory appeal, the respondent alleged that the award could not be enforced because it was not clear that the applicant was the party in whose favour the award was issued, and enforcement of the award would violate public policy. Specifically, the caption of the award, identifying the parties, referred to the claimant by its corporate name but omitted the corporate suffix “sp. z o.o.” (i.e. “Ltd”) identifying the party’s legal form; such an entity, with only that name but no corporate suffix as part of its name, did not exist and had no legal capacity.
The Kraków Court of Appeal found that it was clear that the applicant was the party in whose favour the award was issued because it was identified in the operative wording of the award, as well as in the justification for the award, which according to Polish law is an integral part of the award. Failure to include the corporate suffix for a party in the caption of the award, but identify the party fully only in the operative wording of the award and in the justification for the award, did not violate public policy. Furthermore, the respondent had generally alleged that the award violated public policy but failed to indicate exactly what principle of the legal order was allegedly violated.
The court of appeal denied the appeal accordingly.
Excerpts from the text of the court’s ruling:
1. Under Art. 1197 §3 of the Civil Procedure Code, an arbitration award is a less formalized document than a state court judgment. In particular, it should be agreed that the identification of the parties to the proceeding before the arbitral tribunal does not have to be included in the caption of the award, but at any place in the award. It should be deemed sufficient to include the designation of the parties in the operative wording of the award using the phrase “awards against respondent X in favour of claimant Y the amount Z,” or to identify the parties in the justification for the award, which is an integral part of the award.
2. Art. 1214 §3 of the Civil Procedure Code has to do with a situation in which enforcement of the arbitration award would result in violation of [fundamental principles of the legal order]. This provision thus requires attention to the substantive content of the arbitration award, that is, to assess the adjudicated claim in terms of the permissibility of its realization in light of fundamental principles of the legal order of the Republic of Poland. This does not refer however to formal irregularities committed by the arbitral tribunal.