Cornell University

Scheinman Institute on Conflict Resolution

456 ILR Research Building, 607-255-9298

Deliberation and Award Writing in Labor Arbitration DR215

Not currently offered

This program currently has no scheduled dates.

This intensive program dissects the process and art of writing both an effective post-hearing brief and an effective arbitration award in the labor context. Participants will learn the keys to writing briefs and awards that meet the expectations of the parties, pass judicial scrutiny, and remain true to the underlying arbitral goals of due process, efficiency, and education.


Program highlights include:

  • The legal underpinnings of arbitration that drive the crafting of the ultimate award
  • The methodology of effective deliberation in factual and legal disputes
  • The standards of review used by the courts
  • The ways in which labor awards differ from those in employment arbitration, and how both differ from commonly used formats in commercial arbitration
  • Stylistic variations and ways that an arbitrator develops a personal style without compromising effectiveness

The class will also explore:

  • The seven deadly sins of brief and award writing
  • Common language traps and avoiding them
  • Techniques to use throughout the arbitration that will facilitate the writing process
  • Use of procedural recitations: why or why not
  • Ways to deal with open issues through interim or partial awards
  • Ethical issues that may arise regarding research, assistance, and drafting

Participants will review, critique, and edit selected portions of actual and mock briefs and awards. They will also write portions of awards and one full award that will be reviewed in class and critiqued by the instructor. Two-hour pre-workshop preparation required. Each student will receive personal and detailed feedback on their draft awards.