The resolution of a dispute referred to arbitration often depends, at least in part, on the determination of a question of law which can be isolated from factual issues (e.g., the proper application of a time-bar or the meaning of a contract term). Questions of fact which are commercially determinative of a dispute (or parts of a claim) may also be separated from other issues. The process of dividing issues into discrete procedural stages (most often liability and quantum) is also sometimes referred to as “bifurcation”. Sometimes issues may be bifurcated for reasons of efficiency and practicality even though the first issue to be tried is not determinative of the entire dispute.
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