Certain issues are incapable of being determined by arbitration. In Larkden Pty Ltd v Lloyd Energy Systems Pty Ltd  NSWSC 268 the Supreme Court of New South Wales discussed the extent to which patent disputes can be arbitrated. It also considers the question of potentially hypothetical disputes.
Larkden : the facts
This was an appeal by the claimant against a ruling by an arbitrator that he possessed jurisdiction over disputes between
the parties in respect of a patent licence. The appeal was under s16 of the Commercial Arbitration Act 2010 (NSW) which is
more or less the equivalent of s30 of the English Arbitration Act 1996: the section provides that an arbitrator may rule on
his own jurisdiction but that an award on the point may be appealed to the court within 30 days.
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