Fees and charges

Legal Costs
The legal costs awarded by the arbitrator are subject to taxation either by the arbitrator or the Court. Taxation is a process used in litigation by which the Court assesses a fair amount of legal costs to be paid by the losing party. As a rule of thumb, the “taxed costs” will be about two-thirds of the actual costs spent by the winning party in the arbitration.

Unlike the Court proceedings, where the Court does not charge the parties for the service of the judges or the provision of the courtroom, arbitrators require the parties to pay, usually on an hourly basis. HKMAAC’s leading arbitrators can charge HK$5,000 per hour or more and the average that we have seen is between HK$2,000 and HK$3,000.

Costs of Arbitration
Legal representation is generally not required in arbitration proceedings, that said, parties often engage lawyers to represent them, especially in commercial disputes.

As with litigation, arbitrators charge on an hourly basis. While the costs of arbitration depend on the degree the claim is resisted by the other party, fee arrangements can be flexible. In certain cases, arbitrator may charge a fixed amount up to a particular stage of the proceedings, regardless of the actual time spent, so that disputants may have a definite budget for the proceedings.

Arbitrators usually charge on an hourly basis as well, though during a hearing it may be on a daily basis. As discussed above, rates normally range from HK$2,000 to HK$3,000 per hour depending on experience and expertise.

If the appointing authorities are involved, they will charge a nomination fee. The HKMAAC’s current nomination fee is HK$3,000.