Wyłączenie biegłego w postępowaniu arbitrażowym
DISQUALIFICATION OF AN EXPERT WITNESS IN AN ARBITRATION PROCEDURE
The legislator has not provided any specific regulations stipulating the legal basis of a disqualification of an expert witness in an arbitration procedure in the Polish Civil Procedure Code. As a result, it is clear whether it is possible and, if so, under what conditions it could take place. The proceedings before the arbitration court are entirely distinct from litigation, and, therefore, there are different rules concerning the evidentiary procedure, especially obtaining an expert opinion. During the arbitration procedure, as opposed to litigation, there are two modes of obtaining said evidence. As a general rule, there is a possibility of appointing an expert witness by the arbitration court; however, it is more common for the parties to appoint an arbitration expert witness. This justifies the different approach to the matter of disqualification of an expert witness — on the basis of the source of their appointment.
Regarding the event of appointing an expert witness by the arbitration court, it is important to note that pursuant to the provision of Article 1184 § 2 sentence 2 of the Civil Procedure Code, the arbitration court is not bound by the provisions regulating the litigation. Therefore, in the arbitration procedure on the grounds of the rule stipulated by the provision of Article 13 § 2 of the Civil Procedure Code there is no legal basis to apply the provisions of Article 281 of the Civil Procedure Code regarding the disqualification of an expert witness. However, it appears that in the analyzed matter it is possible to resort to the IBA Guidelines on conflict of interests in international commercial arbitration. The expert witness appointed by the party shall be attributed the status of a witness with special knowledge expert witness. With this approach there is no need to resort to disqualification of an expert witness — the evidence in question shall be evaluated based on rules on witness testimony.