The German Arbitration Institute (DIS) is a private and independent non-profit association with its seat in Berlin with the aim of promoting national and international arbitration as well as other methods of alternative dispute resolution (ADR). We have offices in Berlin, Bonn and Munich.

Find out more here

The German Court of Arbitration for Sport is a private and independent dispute settlement body dedicated to sport-related disputes hosted by the DIS. It was established in January 2008 as a joint initiative of the National Anti-Doping Agency Foundation (NADA) and the DIS.

Find out more here

The DIS is funded independently of any government or (private) entities. It is funded through three different sources:

  • Administrative fees. These are fees charged to the parties of arbitral or other ADR proceedings for administering an arbitration or other ADR proceeding. Information on the DIS’s administrative fees may be found in the DIS Arbitration Rules: Annex 2 to the DIS Arbitration Rules and the DIS costs calculator.
  • Membership fees. The DIS currently has more than 1,400 members based in Germany and overseas who pay annual membership fees, including leading economic and trade organisations and chambers of commerce, leading German companies, judges, lawyers and academics.
  • Events and conferences. The DIS regularly organizes conferences and seminars for legal practitioners and other persons with an interest in arbitration and alternative dispute resolution, generating revenue from the sale of tickets for these events.

Learn more about transparency at the DIS

Membership to DIS is open to any to any natural or legal person.

The DIS currently has more than 1,400 members based in Germany and overseas, including leading economic and trade organisations and chambers of commerce, leading German companies, judges, lawyers and academics.

Find out more here


You can access the DIS members’ area from the top right in the upper menu.

Our members can optimize their visibility through an extended profile: By choosing this option, you have the possibility to complete your profile by adding professional focus, experience, a photograph or information about your current publications.

No. Parties can agree to submit to a DIS arbitration without being members of the DIS.

No. Arbitrators appointed by the DIS do not need to be DIS members. (Also see question 20 below on how arbitrators are selected.)

The SchiedsVZ is a law journal that focuses on developments in the field of arbitration in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Six editions are issued per year.

The journal is included in DIS membership and delivered via mail free of charge for DIS members.

Find out more here

Since the email address is an indispensable element of our database structure, it cannot be changed in the member area. Please contact the DIS Member Service if you wish to change your email address.


There are many advantages of arbitration compared to litigation, particularly for businesses:

Arbitration is conducted in private, so no information the parties would like to keep confidential is made public. Furthermore, the public is not informed of ongoing proceedings between the parties as the DIS does not give out any details about cases or parties involved.

Find out more here

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) describe a variety of methods for resolving disputes that do not involve local courts or arbitration. Arbitration is similar to litigation in that the parties to a dispute present their arguments to a neutral third party (the arbitrator or the arbitral tribunal), who makes a final and enforceable decision on the merits of the case presented to them. The ADR methods of adjudication (mainly used in construction disputes) and expert-determination are similar to arbitration, in that a third party makes a binding decision on the basis of the facts presented to them.

There are also ADR mechanisms that do not use a third party to decide the case, but to help the parties understand their options, needs and risks in order to come to an amicable solution. Mediation is the most popular example and is suitable for many kinds of disputes. Parties often prefer mediation because it gives them more control over the outcome than when a dispute is referred to the courts or to arbitration. It can also help to preserve the relationship between the parties, which the parties may value if their relationship is ongoing. By contrast in conciliation the third party facilitator may also provide the parties with non-binding settlement proposals.

Parties may use ADR methods to avoid litigation or arbitration, which are usually more costly and time-consuming. Generally, and depending on the parties’ dispute resolution clause, the use of amicable ADR does not preclude the parties from subsequently requesting arbitration or going to court, as the case may be.

Find out more here

Information on the different stages of arbitration is available here

Administering arbitrations at DIS

The Request for Arbitration must be submitted to the DIS:

a. in electronic form via email (casemanagement(at)no_spamdisarb.org)


b. in paper form (one copy for each party with attachments and one copy for the DIS without attachments) to the following address:

German Arbitration Institute (DIS)
Marienforster Str. 52
53177 Bonn

The Request for Arbitration must contain:

  • the names and addresses of the parties;
  • the names and addresses of any designated counsel representing the Claimant in the arbitration;
  • a statement of the specific relief sought;
  • the amount of any quantified claims and an estimate of the monetary value of any unquantified claims;
  • a description of the facts and circumstances on which the claims are based;
  • the arbitration agreement(s) on which the Claimant relies;
  • the nomination of an arbitrator if required under the DIS Arbitration Rules 2018, and
  • any particulars or proposals regarding the seat of arbitration, the language of the arbitration, and the rules of law applicable to the merits.

The Claimant must pay the DIS Administrative Fees in accordance with the Schedule of Costs (Annex 2 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules) within the time limit set by the DIS,. Payments to the DIS are made via bank transfer. An invoice detailing banking details and payment due date are sent to the Claimant after receipt of the Request for Arbitration.

For further details, please see the Article 5 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules.

The cost of an arbitration depends in part on the value of the claim. Use our cost calculator for a quick estimate overview, which details the elements of the costs, which include:

  • the arbitrators’ fees and expenses; and
    • the DIS Administrative Fees. The DIS Administrative Fees are calculated based on the amount in dispute.

Details on these costs can also be found in Annex 2 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules.

Note that there will be further costs involved, most notably:

  • the fees and expenses of any expert appointed by the arbitral tribunal; and
    • the costs of the parties that were incurred in connection with the arbitration, including legal fees, fees of experts and expenses of any witnesses.

All companies and natural persons within the EU have to pay VAT on the Administrative Fees of the DIS.

Once the DIS has received the Request for Arbitration, an invoice is sent to the Claimant (via email and post). The DIS Administrative Fees are usually due within 14 days of issuing the invoice. If payment is not received within the date specified in the invoice, the DIS may terminate the arbitration.

The parties must also provide a deposit for the fees and expenses of the arbitrators. The amount due for such deposit is calculated on the basis of the Schedule of Costs (Annex 2 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules). A separate bank account is opened for each arbitration proceeding for the handling of deposits.

A Dispute Manager seeks to assist the parties to select the dispute resolution mechanism best suited for resolving their dispute, explaining all available options to them and their pros and cons in relation to the circumstances. The Dispute Manager has an advisory role and does not impose any decisions upon the parties. Disputes Managers are well suited to disputes where the parties have not had, or had very little, prior experience with commercial disputes.

Thus the Dispute Manager may act as a preliminary step, before any proceedings of whichever nature are commenced, or after proceedings have commenced, but where the parties wish to understand and use appropriate dispute resolution mechanisms to progress the case, usually in a quicker or more cost-effective way.

Either party may request a Dispute Manager, or the parties may make a joint request. However, the Dispute Manager does not only advise one party, but both parties must agree to a joint meeting with the Dispute Manager.

Further details are available in Annex 6 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules.

No. The DIS also administers international arbitrations. About 40% of all arbitrations administered by the DIS are international and include at least one non-German party. In recent years, parties from up to 30 different countries have participated in DIS arbitrations annually.

The DIS is Germany’s leading institution for alternative dispute resolution and arbitration. The DIS has a long tradition of administering commercial disputes between companies, having successfully administered thousands of arbitrations since 1920.

The DIS Arbitration Rules are suitable for companies of all sizes and industries and for arbitrations seated in Germany and abroad. The DIS Arbitration Rules provide a well-structured procedural and institutional framework to ensure that arbitrations are conducted with integrity, efficiency and fairness. Parties from around the world participating in a DIS arbitration benefit from the Institute’s administrative know-how, its many years of experience, and its specialized expertise.

The 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules place a particular focus on early dispute resolution as well as on efficiency and speed – a feature which has been embraced by the business community. This focus distinguishes them from other institutional rules: the promotion of amicable settlement, provided that all parties agree to it. The Rules provide a solid procedural framework allowing parties to adapt the proceedings to their particular needs. The Rules also include Expedited Proceedings, Supplementary Rules for Corporate Disputes and Dispute Management Rules.

In addition to the DIS Arbitration Rules, the DIS offers rules for the entire spectrum of alternative dispute resolution proceedings: conciliation, mediation, expertise, expert determination and adjudication.

The DIS primarily administers arbitral proceedings under the DIS Arbitration Rules. The DIS also administers arbitral proceedings under the UNCITRAL Rules if the arbitration clause or arbitration agreement states that the arbitration should be administered by the DIS.

Upon request, the DIS can function as an Appointing Authority under the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules administered by the DIS and appoint arbitrators for national and international ad hoc arbitration proceedings.

The DIS can only be involved if the parties explicitly agree to refer the dispute to the DIS and the DIS Arbitration Rules. Under the DIS Arbitration Rules, the “seat” of an arbitration can be any city in Germany or abroad.

Yes. If the arbitration agreement so requires, the DIS is able to administer the case in languages other than German. The DIS frequently administers arbitrations in English. Approximately one third of the arbitrations administered by the DIS are in English.

The default option is for the parties to choose the arbitrator(s). If the parties have opted for a panel of three arbitrators, then each party chooses one arbitrator and the two party-selected arbitrators choose a third arbitrator to the panel. If one or both parties fail to choose an arbitrator, or the two arbitrators fail to agree on the third arbitrator, then the Appointing Committee of the DIS will select and appoint the arbitrator(s).

If the parties have not agreed upon a sole arbitrator within a time limit or if a party fails to nominate a co-arbitrator, the Appointing Committee of the DIS will select and appoint an appropriate arbitrator. Parties can also ask the DIS to choose all three arbitrators.

The corresponding rules can be found in Articles 9-14 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules.

Yes. The DIS can function as an appointing authority for ad hoc cases (including sport-related arbitrations). In order to have an arbitrator appointed in an ad hoc case, the parties should send a written request to the following address:

German Arbitration Institute (DIS)
Marienforster Str. 52
53177 Bonn

If you have any questions regarding ad hoc appointments, please contact our Case Management Team.

The mean duration of an arbitration at the DIS is approximately 18-22 months. However, the actual duration of an arbitration depends on many factors: the number of arbitrators involved, the total amount in dispute, the schedule for submissions, whether there will be interlocutory applications, the factual witnesses and/or expert witnesses involved and the number of hearing days scheduled.

The DIS Arbitration Rules also offer expedited proceedings, in which case the final award must be issued no later than six months after conclusion of the case management conference. If the final award cannot be made within the time limit, the arbitral tribunal shall inform the parties and the DIS in writing of the reasons. If such time limit is exceeded, the arbitral tribunal shall not cease to have jurisdiction for that reason, and the final award shall be made as soon as possible.

Yes. In expedited proceedings, as per Annex 4 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules, the final award must be issued no later than six months after conclusion of the case management conference.

The parties can agree in the arbitration clause or arbitration agreement that the rules on expedited proceedings should be followed. By following the DIS Rules on Expedited Proceedings, the parties agree to shorter time limits for making submissions and providing evidence.

The parties and the arbitral tribunal can also agree a faster timetable for resolving the dispute after an arbitration has commenced.

For further details, please see Annex 4 of the 2018 DIS Arbitration Rules.

No. A DIS arbitration is confidential and awards are not made public (unless all parties agree otherwise).

Enforcing an arbitral award in Germany:

German arbitration law provides for recognition and enforcement of domestic and foreign arbitral awards. Germany is also a party to the 1958 New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Arbitral Awards (New York Convention); the 1961 European Convention on International Commercial Arbitration (Geneva Convention); and the 1965 Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and Nationals of Other States (ICSID Convention).

Applications for the recognition and enforcement of an arbitral award must be filed with the higher regional court (Oberlandesgericht). In the case of domestic awards, the application must be sent to the higher regional court designated in the arbitration agreement or in whose district the place of arbitration is located. In the case of foreign awards, the application must be sent to the higher regional court in whose district the opposing party has its place of residence or where assets of the party or property in dispute are located. The application must be in German and should include the original award or a certified copy of the award.

If an arbitral award is (for example) contrary to the domestic German public policy, the award will not be recognised or declared enforceable.

Enforcing an arbitral award abroad:

In order to enforce an arbitral award in a specific country, the award must be recognized by that country’s national courts.

The two basic actions contemplated by the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards (the New York Convention) are the recognition and enforcement of foreign arbitral awards through domestic courts and the referral by a court to arbitration.

A party seeking enforcement of a foreign award needs to supply to the domestic court (a) the arbitral award and (b) the arbitration agreement. As for the referral of a dispute to arbitration, a court of a Contracting State, when seized of a matter in respect of which the parties have made an arbitration agreement, must, at the request of one of the parties, refer the dispute to arbitration.

For further information on enforcing an arbitral award abroad, please contact your legal adviser.

Important notice: Outdated web browser INTERNET EXPLORER

The DIS website is not fully compatible with the outdated web browser INTERNET EXPLORER, for which security updates are no longer being provided. Some important functions of the website are not available (e.g. cost calculator, member access) or availability is limited (e.g. event area) with INTERNET EXPLORER.
For full use of the DIS website, please switch to an up to date web browser such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox or Safari.