THE ADVOCATE 269
VOL. 76 PART 2 MARCH 2018
By R.C. Tino Bella*
A Practitioner’s Guide to Commercial Arbitration, edited by Marvin J.
Huberman. Irwin Law, 2017. 520 pages (paperback), $115.
Reviewed by Barry Leon*
In British Columbia, as in many jurisdictions, a common complaint one
hears about commercial arbitration, both domestic and international, is that
it does not live up to its promise of being a less expensive, more efficient
and faster method of adjudicating disputes, with the benefit of an adjudicator
with appropriate expertise.
Why is that the case, and how can the prospects of achieving arbitration’s
promise be enhanced?
The use of commercial arbitration in British Columbia continues to
expand as more businesses and their legal counsel seek the benefits that
arbitration can offer over court adjudication, particularly at a time when
courts face delays that often are incompatible with the pace of business
As a result of the increased use of arbitration, B.C. has a growing number
of experienced commercial arbitrators and a growing number of legal counsel
who are familiar with arbitration.
Still, achieving the promise of arbitration remains a work in progress.
The parties, arbitration counsel and arbitrators engage in a “blame
game”, each saying that the failure of arbitration as a dispute resolution
* Barry Leon is a judge of the Commercial Division, Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court. An earlier, shorter version of this
review was published in the Canadian Bar Association’s The National on November 27, 2017. The views expressed are
those of the author, and are not intended to represent the views of his court or jurisdiction, nor how he would decide
any issue touched on in this book review, after hearing evidence and submissions, were it to come before him for