The new Rules introduced – inter alia – the following new features:
- VIAC now also administers purely domestic cases, implementing the amendment of Section 139 WKG (Austrian Federal Act on Economic Chambers) of 17 May 2017 (Federal Law Gazette I No. 73/2017 of 19 June 2017) (Article 1 VR and Article 1 VMR).
- In the interest of gender diversity, it is explicitly defined that, in practice, the terms in the Rules shall be used in a gender-specific manner (Article 6 VR and Article 2 VMR).
- All new proceedings are administered by VIAC through an electronic case management system as of 1 January 2018; the provisions on the submission of Statement of Claims and on service have been adapted accordingly (Articles 7, 12 and 36 VR and Articles 1 and 3 VMR).
- The Vienna Rules now explicitly specify that arbitrators and parties as well as their representatives shall conduct the proceedings in an efficient and cost-effective manner; this may also be taken into consideration in determining the arbitrators‘ fees / costs (Article 16 paragraph 6, Article 28 paragraph 1, Article 38 paragraph 2 VR).
- Respondents now have the possibility to request security for costs under certain circumstances (Article 33 paragraphs 6 and 7 VR).
- In determining the arbitrators‘ fees, the VIAC Secretary General now is more flexible to increase the fees on a case-by-case basis by a maximum total of 40% or, conversely, to decrease the fees where appropriate (Article 44 paragraphs 7 and 10 VR).
- The Model Arbitration Clause and the Model Mediation Clauses have been revised and adapted to the new wording (Annex 1).The appointment of members of the Board has become more flexible (Annex 2; Article 2 VR).
- The Schedule of Fees has also been revised. The Registration Fees and Administrative Fees for low amounts in dispute have been staggered in a new manner and thereby reduced. At the same time, the Administrative Fees for very high amounts in dispute have been slightly increased, but they are still very moderate in comparison to other institutions. The Registration Fees and Administrative Fees for proceedings pursuant to the Rules of Mediation have been aligned with those of the Rules of Arbitration (Annex 3; Articles 4 and 8 VR).