2007 ORS § 36.425¹
Filing of decision and award
  • notice of appeal
  • trial de novo
  • attorney fees and costs
  • effect of arbitration decision and award

(1) At the conclusion of arbitration under ORS 36.400 (Mandatory arbitration programs) to 36.425 (Filing of decision and award) of a civil action, the arbitrator shall file the decision and award with the clerk of the court that referred the action to arbitration, together with proof of service of a copy of the decision and award upon each party. If the decision and award require the payment of money, including payment of costs or attorney fees, the decision and award must be substantially in the form prescribed by ORS 18.042 (Judgment in civil action that includes money award).

(2)(a) Within 20 days after the filing of a decision and award with the clerk of the court under subsection (1) of this section, a party against whom relief is granted by the decision and award or a party whose claim for relief was greater than the relief granted to the party by the decision and award, but no other party, may file with the clerk a written notice of appeal and request for a trial de novo of the action in the court on all issues of law and fact. A copy of the notice of appeal and request for a trial de novo must be served on all other parties to the proceeding. After the filing of the written notice a trial de novo of the action shall be held. If the action is triable by right to a jury and a jury is demanded by a party having the right of trial by jury, the trial de novo shall include a jury.

(b) If a party files a written notice under paragraph (a) of this subsection, a trial fee or jury trial fee, as applicable, shall be collected as provided in ORS 21.270 (Trial fees).

(c) A party filing a written notice under paragraph (a) of this subsection shall deposit with the clerk of the court the sum of $150. If the position under the arbitration decision and award of the party filing the written notice is not improved as a result of a judgment in the action on the trial de novo, the clerk shall dispose of the sum deposited in the same manner as a fee collected by the clerk. If the position of the party is improved as a result of a judgment, the clerk shall return the sum deposited to the party. If the court finds that the party filing the written notice is then unable to pay all or any part of the sum to be deposited, the court may waive in whole or in part, defer in whole or in part, or both, the sum. If the sum or any part thereof is so deferred and the position of the party is not improved as a result of a judgment, the deferred amount shall be paid by the party according to the terms of the deferral.

(3) If a written notice is not filed under subsection (2)(a) of this section within the 20 days prescribed, the court shall cause to be prepared and entered a judgment based on the arbitration decision and award. A judgment entered under this subsection may not be appealed.

(4) Notwithstanding any other provision of law or the Oregon Rules of Civil Procedure:

(a) If a party requests a trial de novo under the provisions of this section, the action is subject to arbitration under the provisions of ORS 36.405 (Referral to mandatory arbitration) (1)(a), the party is entitled to attorney fees by law or contract, and the position of the party is not improved after judgment on the trial de novo, the party shall not be entitled to an award of attorney fees or costs and disbursements incurred by the party before the filing of the decision and award of the arbitrator, and shall be taxed the reasonable attorney fees and costs and disbursements incurred by the other parties to the action on the trial de novo after the filing of the decision and award of the arbitrator.

(b) If a party requests a trial de novo under the provisions of this section, the action is subject to arbitration under ORS 36.405 (Referral to mandatory arbitration) (1)(a), the party is not entitled to attorney fees by law or contract, and the position of the party is not improved after judgment on the trial de novo, pursuant to subsection (5) of this section the party shall be taxed the reasonable attorney fees and costs and disbursements of the other parties to the action on the trial de novo incurred by the other parties after the filing of the decision and award of the arbitrator.

(c) If a party requests a trial de novo under the provisions of this section, the action is subject to arbitration under ORS 36.405 (Referral to mandatory arbitration) (1)(b), and the position of the party is not improved after judgment on the trial de novo, the party shall not be entitled to an award of attorney fees or costs and disbursements and shall be taxed the costs and disbursements incurred by the other parties after the filing of the decision and award of the arbitrator.

(5) If a party is entitled to an award of attorney fees under subsection (4) of this section, but is also entitled to an award of attorney fees under contract or another provision of law, the court shall award reasonable attorney fees pursuant to the contract or other provision of law. If a party is entitled to an award of attorney fees solely by reason of subsection (4) of this section, the court shall award reasonable attorney fees not to exceed the following amounts:

(a) Twenty percent of the judgment, if the defendant requests the trial de novo but the position of the defendant is not improved after the trial de novo; or

(b) Ten percent of the amount claimed in the complaint, if the plaintiff requests the trial de novo but the position of the plaintiff is not improved after the trial de novo.

(6) Within seven days after the filing of a decision and award under subsection (1) of this section, a party may file with the court and serve on the other parties to the arbitration written exceptions directed solely to the award or denial of attorney fees or costs. Exceptions under this subsection may be directed to the legal grounds for an award or denial of attorney fees or costs, or to the amount of the award. Any party opposing the exceptions must file a written response with the court and serve a copy of the response on the party filing the exceptions. Filing and service of the response must be made within seven days after the service of the exceptions on the responding party. A judge of the court shall decide the issue and enter a decision on the award of attorney fees and costs. If the judge fails to enter a decision on the award within 20 days after the filing of the exceptions, the award of attorney fees and costs shall be considered affirmed. The filing of exceptions under this subsection does not constitute an appeal under subsection (2) of this section and does not affect the finality of the award in any way other than as specifically provided in this subsection.

(7) For the purpose of determining whether the position of a party has improved after a trial de novo under the provisions of this section, the court shall not consider any money award or other relief granted on claims asserted by amendments to the pleadings made after the filing of the decision and award of the arbitrator. [Formerly 33.400; 1993 c.482 §3; 1995 c.455 §3; 1995 c.618 §14a; 1995 c.658 §34; 1997 c.756 §§1,2; 2003 c.576 §170]