Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Online Dispute Resolution In India

Online dispute resolution in India (ODR in India) forms an integral part of Legal Enablement of ICT Systems in India and Legal Framework for Information Society in India. Legal enablement of ICT systems assists in creating an efficient, accountable and transparent legal and judicial system by utilising various technology tools.

There are many more counter parts of  Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) In India that form various facets of legal enablement of ICT systems in India. This include establishment of e-courts in India or e-judiciary in India and online arbitration in India.

However, till the end of October 2012 we are still waiting for the establishment of first e-court of India. Further, even cyber arbitration in India has not been successful so far. In fact, there are very few domain name dispute resolution service providers in India and just one techno legal online dispute resolution service providers in India.

Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB) is managing the exclusive Techno Legal Centre of Excellence for Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) in India (TLCEODRI). Further, PTLB is also providing the exclusive Techno Legal Online Dispute Resolution Services in India. The exclusive Techno Legal Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) Centre of India is also managed by PTLB.

While International Response to Online Dispute Resolution is pretty good yet Indian response in this regard is far from satisfactory. In fact, ODR In India Is Facing Severe Legal Roadblocks. At the international level as well, International Harmonisation Of ODR Is Required. International Legal Standards For Online Dispute Resolution must be urgently formulated.

On the front of regulatory environment and disputes resolution as well, India has to make necessary changes in its regulatory environment. The commercial disputes issues that affect foreign investors operating in India may include inadequate handling of statutory legal compliances by the Indian partner, management control i.e. (Indian corporate laws over ride any private contractual terms between the joint venture partners, unless such terms are addressed and reflected in the Articles of Association of the company) and protection of intellectual property rights, and double tax issues.  Foreign investors may take pre-emptive steps against frivolous litigation (criminal charges) by including suitable arbitration clauses in their agreements.

Thus a practical aspect to consider may be uniformity and alignment between applicable law, rules, venue and forum for arbitration, enforcement of foreign judgments and awards in India, apart from logistics of perhaps having to manage multi-jurisdictional legal teams, including costs.