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Är skiljeklausulen "unconscionable"? - En komparativ studie av Sverige och USA gällande oskäliga skiljeklausuler i kommersiella avtalsrelationer

Bergman Olsson, Tove LU (2017) LAGF03 20171
Department of Law
Faculty of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Den svenska affärsjuridiken har utvecklats under de senaste decennierna. Influenser har med största sannolikhet hämtats från den internationella arenan och det syns en tydlig tendens mot en utveckling i samma riktning som den amerikanska avtalsrätten.

Syftet med denna uppsats är att göra en jämförelse mellan det svenska och det amerikanska rättssystemet och att beskriva möjligheter att jämka eller åsidosätta en skiljeklausul med hänvisning till dess oskälighet. För att möjliggöra detta kommer jag presentera viktiga juridiska principer inom avtalsrätten, tolkningsprinciper och viktigast av allt generalklausulerna om oskälighet i de svenska och amerikanska rättssystemen.

År 1976 introducerades 36 § avtalslagen, vilken är att se som en... (More)
Den svenska affärsjuridiken har utvecklats under de senaste decennierna. Influenser har med största sannolikhet hämtats från den internationella arenan och det syns en tydlig tendens mot en utveckling i samma riktning som den amerikanska avtalsrätten.

Syftet med denna uppsats är att göra en jämförelse mellan det svenska och det amerikanska rättssystemet och att beskriva möjligheter att jämka eller åsidosätta en skiljeklausul med hänvisning till dess oskälighet. För att möjliggöra detta kommer jag presentera viktiga juridiska principer inom avtalsrätten, tolkningsprinciper och viktigast av allt generalklausulerna om oskälighet i de svenska och amerikanska rättssystemen.

År 1976 introducerades 36 § avtalslagen, vilken är att se som en inskränkning av avtalsfriheten. Denna princip har en stark förankring i både det svenska och amerikanska rättssystemet och är högt värdesatt. 36§ avtalslagen gör det möjligt att åsidosätta eller jämka oskäliga (eller unconscionable) avtalsvillkor. Huvudsyftet med bestämmelsen är att skydda den svagare parten i en avtalsrelation, men regeln kan också tillämpas på kommersiella avtalsrelationer där parterna är jämbördiga. Även i det amerikanska rättssystemet är avtalsfriheten en av de viktigaste avtalsrättsliga principerna och domstolarna är därför restriktiva i sitt beslutande om begränsningar. Likväl uppställer unconscionability-doktrinen i UCC 2-302 ett juridiskt verktyg för att åsidosätta vissa avtalsvillkor. Denna framställning fokuserar därför på 36§ avtalslagen i förhållande till UCC 2-302.

När det gäller tolkning skiljer sig reglerna till viss del åt mellan länderna. I Sverige är det viktigaste att fastslå den gemensamma partsavsikten, medan det amerikanska rättssystemet lägger större vikt vid avtalets skrivna ord. På så sätt är den amerikanska four corners rule på många sätt den totala motsatsen till den svenska gemensamma partavsikten.

Skiljeklausuler förs ofta in i avtal och upprätthålls i de flesta fall. När parter kommer överens om att lösa eventuella framtida tvister genom skiljeförfarande frånsäger de sig sin rätt till domstolsprövning och måste istället få tvisten prövad av en skiljedomstol. Skiljedomarens beslut binder parterna och kan endast under vissa omständigheter bli upphävd av en allmän domstol. Trots detta, och trots att det amerikanska och det svenska rättssystemet härstammar från två olika rättsfamiljer, är det tydligt att båda systemen är ovilliga att åsidosätta skiljeklausuler i kommersiella avtal, med hänvisning till avtalsfriheten. Det finns en omfattande praxis som talar för skiljeklausuler, framförallt baserad på det faktum att skiljeförfarande ofta är ett mer effektivt och mindre kostsamt sätt att lösa en tvist på. (Less)
Abstract
The Swedish business law have developed during the past decades, especially through impressions from the international arena, and it can be seen that influences have been taken from the American traditions of contracting.

The aim of this thesis is to make a comparison between the Swedish and the American legal system and describe the possibilities to invalidate an arbitration agreement or an arbitration clause due to unreasonableness or unconscionability. In order to conduct this study, I will present important legal principles of contract law, interpretation principles, and most important the general clauses of unconscionability in the both legal systems.

In 1976 the article 36 of the Swedish act of contracts was introduced, which... (More)
The Swedish business law have developed during the past decades, especially through impressions from the international arena, and it can be seen that influences have been taken from the American traditions of contracting.

The aim of this thesis is to make a comparison between the Swedish and the American legal system and describe the possibilities to invalidate an arbitration agreement or an arbitration clause due to unreasonableness or unconscionability. In order to conduct this study, I will present important legal principles of contract law, interpretation principles, and most important the general clauses of unconscionability in the both legal systems.

In 1976 the article 36 of the Swedish act of contracts was introduced, which can be seen as a limitation of the freedom of contract. In both the Swedish and American regulation, freedom of contract is highly valued. Art 36 makes it possible to set aside or adjust unfair (or unconscionable) contract terms. The main purpose of the article is to protect the weaker party in a contract relation, but it can also be applicable to commercial contract relations were the parties is to be seen as equal. In the American system as well, the freedom of contract is one of the most important contract principles and most courts are careful in their deciding of limitations. Nevertheless, the doctrine of unconscionability is providing a legal tool through UCC 2-302 to set aside certain clauses in contracts. In this thesis, the main focus will be on art 36 Swedish act of contracts compared to the American UCC 2-302.

When it comes to interpretation, the rules differ between the two countries. In Sweden, the most important is to find out the shared intention of the contract parties, but in the US emphasis is given to the written word in the contract. The American four corner rule is in many ways the complete opposite to the Swedish “gemensam partsavsikt” (shared intention).

Arbitration clauses are included in many contracts and are generally upheld. When parties agree to arbitrate any dispute arising out of their contract, they forgo their right to litigate disputes in court and must instead have the dispute resolved by arbitration. The arbitrator’s decision binds the parties and can only on certain limited grounds be reviewed by a court. Therefore, by entering an arbitration agreement, a party abandons her fundamental right to have a court resolve a dispute arising out of the contract relation. Despite this, and despite the fact that American and Swedish law comes from two different legal families, it is evident that both systems are unwilling to set aside arbitration clauses in commercial contracts, with regards to the freedom of contract. There is an extensive policy in favor of arbitration, mostly based on the fact that arbitration is often a more efficient and less expensive way to settle a dispute. (Less)
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author
Bergman Olsson, Tove LU
supervisor
organization
course
LAGF03 20171
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
avtalsrätt, komparativ rätt, skiljeklausuler, oskäliga, USA
language
Swedish
id
8907971
date added to LUP
2017-06-29 10:46:16
date last changed
2017-06-29 10:46:16
@misc{8907971,
  abstract     = {The Swedish business law have developed during the past decades, especially through impressions from the international arena, and it can be seen that influences have been taken from the American traditions of contracting. 

The aim of this thesis is to make a comparison between the Swedish and the American legal system and describe the possibilities to invalidate an arbitration agreement or an arbitration clause due to unreasonableness or unconscionability. In order to conduct this study, I will present important legal principles of contract law, interpretation principles, and most important the general clauses of unconscionability in the both legal systems. 

In 1976 the article 36 of the Swedish act of contracts was introduced, which can be seen as a limitation of the freedom of contract. In both the Swedish and American regulation, freedom of contract is highly valued. Art 36 makes it possible to set aside or adjust unfair (or unconscionable) contract terms. The main purpose of the article is to protect the weaker party in a contract relation, but it can also be applicable to commercial contract relations were the parties is to be seen as equal. In the American system as well, the freedom of contract is one of the most important contract principles and most courts are careful in their deciding of limitations. Nevertheless, the doctrine of unconscionability is providing a legal tool through UCC 2-302 to set aside certain clauses in contracts. In this thesis, the main focus will be on art 36 Swedish act of contracts compared to the American UCC 2-302. 

When it comes to interpretation, the rules differ between the two countries. In Sweden, the most important is to find out the shared intention of the contract parties, but in the US emphasis is given to the written word in the contract. The American four corner rule is in many ways the complete opposite to the Swedish “gemensam partsavsikt” (shared intention). 

Arbitration clauses are included in many contracts and are generally upheld. When parties agree to arbitrate any dispute arising out of their contract, they forgo their right to litigate disputes in court and must instead have the dispute resolved by arbitration. The arbitrator’s decision binds the parties and can only on certain limited grounds be reviewed by a court. Therefore, by entering an arbitration agreement, a party abandons her fundamental right to have a court resolve a dispute arising out of the contract relation. Despite this, and despite the fact that American and Swedish law comes from two different legal families, it is evident that both systems are unwilling to set aside arbitration clauses in commercial contracts, with regards to the freedom of contract. There is an extensive policy in favor of arbitration, mostly based on the fact that arbitration is often a more efficient and less expensive way to settle a dispute.},
  author       = {Bergman Olsson, Tove},
  keyword      = {avtalsrätt,komparativ rätt,skiljeklausuler,oskäliga,USA},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Är skiljeklausulen "unconscionable"? - En komparativ studie av Sverige och USA gällande oskäliga skiljeklausuler i kommersiella avtalsrelationer},
  year         = {2017},
}