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Application To Set Aside An Award Dismissed Where Fraud And Corruption Are Discovered After The Time Limit

In Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels v Global Gaming Philippines [2020] SGHC 01, the Singapore High Court held that timelines must be adhered to in an application to set aside an award, even where the basis for the setting aside of the award was only discovered after the time limit had lapsed.  

In this case, Bloomberry sought to set aside the award on the grounds that, amongst others, the award was induced by fraud and corruption. This application to set aside the award was made over a year after the three-months time limit for challenging awards as provided under Article 34(3) of the Model Law. Bloomberry contended that it should be granted an extension of time as the alleged fraud was only discovered after the time limit had expired.  

The High Court held that the time limit set out in Article 34(3) Model Law was an absolute time limit and could not be extended, even in cases where fraud or corruption is discovered after the 3-months period. Moreover, there was no provision in Singapore law that stated that the limit for a setting-aside application should run from the date of discovery of an alleged fraud, or of any other facts that come to light after an award has been rendered. Such an absolute time limit upholds finality and legal certainty.

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