The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) has made new arrangements for the administration of its arbitration process, which has resolved disputes among companies in the worldwide film and TV production, distribution, financing and sales industry since 1984. 

IFTA has designated the International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR), the international division of the American Arbitration Association (AAA), to administer arbitrations governed by the IFTA rules. 

IFTA and the ICDR have developed new rules for IFTA arbitrations which, says IFTA, “integrate the best and most current international arbitration procedures and entertainment industry practices from ICDR and IFTA to deliver efficient, economic and fair arbitration proceedings.” 

The ICDR will establish a specialised arbitrator panel for IFTA arbitrations that will incorporate IFTA’s existing panel of entertainment, intellectual property and copyright attorneys. 

Arbitration cases initiated up to the end of this year will still be governed by the existing rules but will be handled by the ICDR tribunal rather than IFTA. Going forward, IFTA’s model license and sales agreements will include a provision under which the parties elect to use ICDR rules, which are similar to the IFTA rules.

IFTA president and CEO Jean Prewitt commented: “We are incredibly proud of this widely used, neutral arbitration service established over 35 years ago to ensure more timely and knowledgeable resolution of industry disputes. IFTA Arbitration has administered thousands of entertainment related arbitrations involving nearly $1bn in claims. Partnering with AAA-IDCR offers incredible opportunities to grow and enhance this industry service and to give clients the benefit of the additional resources offered by ICDR-AAA.” 

AAA-ICDR senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary Eric Tuchmann said: “We are honoured that IFTA has designated and entrusted the ICDR to provide dispute resolution services to their international film and television industry constituents. IFTA’s highly regarded programme has been instrumental to its industry for decades and we look forward to providing arbitration and mediation services to the independent film and television industry.”