Tucson, AZ asked in Estate Planning for Arizona

Q: AZ Pro. Rules of Conduct, rule 2.4 comment 2, seems to direct Attorney's acting in the Capacity of an Arbitrator to AAA.

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1 Lawyer Answer

A: Yes it says: "Lawyer-neutrals may also be subject to various codes of ethics, such as the Code of Ethics for Arbitration in Commercial Disputes prepared by a joint committee of the American Bar Association and the American Arbitration Association or the Model Standards of Conduct for Mediators jointly prepared by the American Bar Association, the American Arbitration Association and the Society of Professionals in Dispute Resolution."

If a lawyer is providing services as an arbitrator through the American Arbitration Association or another organization that has adopted the Code of Ethics for Arbitration in Commercial Disputes, he/she may lose their right to act as an arbitrator, temporarily or permanently, through the organization if he/she violates this Code.

As the Code itself states: "This Code does not take the place of or supersede such laws, agreements, or arbitration rules to which the parties have agreed and should be read in conjunction with other rules of ethics. It does not establish new or additional grounds for judicial review of arbitration awards. All provisions of this Code should therefore be read as subject to contrary provisions of applicable law and arbitration rules. They should also be read as subject to contrary agreements of the parties."

Complaints of unethical behavior by commercial arbitrators are extremely rare.

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