Brief Rules

May 2022


Updated: May 30, 2022

Ejudicate, Inc. d/b/a BRIEF (“BRIEF”) may amend or update these rules without notice. It is the responsibility of the participant(s) to check these rules periodically.

By initiating and submitting to the BRIEF settlement and arbitration platform, the parties are deemed to have adopted, accepted and acquiesced to these rules (and any amendments) as part of their arbitration and agree to the applicability of these rules to their dispute(s).

The BRIEF rules to your arbitration will be those rules in effect at the time the demand for arbitration, stipulation or court order is uploaded to the BRIEF platform.

Small Claims Rules Notice

If a disputed matter is valued at $15,000 or more it will be subject to all the rules herein, except those rules labeled “SMALL CLAIMS” which are special rules for all matters valued at $14,999.99 or less (such total excluding fees and costs, including the cost for Brief). SMALL CLAIMS rules are designed to streamline these matters and decide them quickly, fairly and efficiently at a lower cost to the disputing parties.

1. Brief Cannot Provide Legal Advice


2. Arbitrator Selection

  1. The Arbitrator or E-Judge is selected by EJUDICATE, not the parties.   
  2. An Arbitrator is selected by BRIEF based on jurisdiction of the matter and the Arbitrator’s skill set, experience, impartiality and neutrality, amongst other factors.   
  3. The Arbitrator is required to render a ruling fairly, independently, impartially and without conflict of interest.  

3. Jurisdiction

  1. Unless the issue of arbitrability has been previously determined by the court, the Arbitrator (or “E-Judge” who is assigned to the case), shall have the power to rule on his or her own jurisdiction, including any objections with respect to the existence, scope or validity of the arbitration agreement or order. 
  2. In addition, the Arbitrator shall have the power to determine the existence or validity of a contract of which an arbitration clause forms a part. Such an arbitration clause shall be treated as an agreement independent of the other terms of the contract for these purposes. 
  3. A decision by the Arbitrator that the balance of the contract is void shall not for that reason alone render invalid the arbitration clause. 
  4. A party must object to the jurisdiction of the Arbitrator or to the arbitrability of a claim or counterclaim no later than the required filing date of the answering statement (or answer) to the claim or counterclaim that gives rise to the objection. 
  5. The Arbitrator, at his or her discretion, may rule on such objections as a preliminary matter or as part of the final Award.
  6. Upon continued objection of a party to the service of a neutral arbitrator, BRIEF may refer the matter back to the parties to submit to the appropriate Court for determination, which shall be conclusive.

4. Service

  1. At the outset of a matter, BRIEF will notify the Defendant (or responding party) in the manner set forth in the agreement between the parties as well as electronically.  
  2. If there is no manner of Notice or Service set forth between the parties, then BRIEF will serve the Case Initiating Notice electronically and by return receipt mail (which may include overnight delivery).
  3. After the Case Initiating Notice is served, all future communications by BRIEF will be done electronically via email or through its platform.  
  4. The parties are responsible to advise BRIEF in any change of email, notice requirements or address.  

5. Interparty & Arbitrator Communications

  1.  The Plaintiff and Defendant are not able to communicate directly with each other through the BRIEF portal or platform.  
  2. Any and all interparty inquiries must be submitted directly to the assigned Arbitrator who will then decide whether an all-party communication is required.  This is completely at the discretion of the Arbitrator.  
  3. The Arbitrator can only be contacted through the BRIEF portal. 
  4. Communications sent to the Arbitrator outside of the BRIEF platform will not be reviewed or accepted.  
  5. Failure to comply may result in penalties or fines issued by the Arbitrator.   

6. Submissions of Testimony and Evidence

  1. Any and all submissions of testimony or evidence must be delivered through the BRIEF platform in the format required.
  2. The Parties agree that the arbitrator can rely on digital copies of contracts and agreements, digital signatures (as applicable) and all applicable documents and evidence submitted to the arbitrator on the Brief platform.   Each submission will be automatically deemed to be evidentially authentic(ated) by the arbitrator unless specifically and timely objected to by a Party.
  3. Each party is given the opportunity to respond to the other party’s initially submitted testimony and evidence through the BRIEF platform.
    1. Unless there is a default or the Defendant agrees with the Plaintiff’s claim, each party is given at least two opportunities to submit, in writing or digitally, all of his/her/its testimony and supporting evidence through the BRIEF process and platform.
    2. SMALL CLAIMS Only:  Under the SMALL CLAIMS’ rules, unless there is a default or the Defendant agrees with the Plaintiff’s claim, each party is given only one opportunity to submit, in writing or digitally, all of his/her/its testimony and supporting evidence through the BRIEF process and platform.
    3. All testimony and evidence will be reviewed by the Arbitrator after the parties complete their submissions.
    4. Once the submission process is concluded or closed no further submissions of evidence or testimony can be filed unless otherwise requested by the Arbitrator.
  4. All testimony submitted to BRIEF is submitted under penalty of perjury.
  5. All documentary evidence submitted is deemed submitted under penalty of perjury as a true and correct copy of the original, unless otherwise stated by the submitting party.
  6. Notice of Errata. In the event that a submission to Brief requires correction or if a document needs to be updated or substituted, you can utilize the Notice of Errata function to make that correction. 

    You will need to explain the error, supply the correct information (and any uploads), and submit the correction as part of your overall case.  Once a correction is submitted the assigned Ejudge will be advised of the correction so that he or she can review the corrected information.    Corrections must be truthful and factual and are submitted under penalty of perjury.  If a correction is submitted after the Ejudge has reviewed the materials submitted the Ejudge may, at his or her discretion, weigh the importance of that submission and its impact on the overall decision.  It cannot be stressed enough that the sooner an error is corrected, the more likely it is that the Ejudge will have the proper time to evaluate and consider the correction.  

7. Response Times.

  1. Claims that are $15,000 or more:
    1. Once a claim is submitted, the Defendant (or Respondent) has 30 days to file its response or answer and any mandatory counterclaims.
    2. Failure to respond to a claim will lead to a waiver of any defenses and will result in an entry of default.   After entry of default, the claim will be submitted to the Arbitrator for final determination, prove-up and adjudication.
    3. Once Defendant (or Respondent) has filed its response (inclusive of evidence and testimony) Plaintiff (or Petitioner) has 14 days to file any reply to that response, evidence and testimony.
    4. Once Plaintiff (or Petitioner) has filed its reply, Defendant (or Respondent) has seven (7) days to file its counter-reply.
    5. After those seven (7) days the submission period is closed and the Arbitrator is provided with all of the case testimony and evidence.  No further evidence, documents, edits or testimony will be accepted by the Arbitrator after this cut-off date.
  2.  SMALL CLAIMS Only:
    1. Once a claim is submitted, the Defendant (or Respondent) has 30 days to file its COMPLETE response or answer and any mandatory counterclaims.
    2. No further responses or replies are allowed.
    3. Failure to respond to a claim will lead to a waiver of any defenses and will result in an entry of default.   After entry of default, the claim will be submitted to the Arbitrator for final determination, prove-up and adjudication.
    4. After those seven (7) days the submission period is closed and the Arbitrator is provided with all of the case testimony and evidence.  No further evidence, documents, edits or testimony will be accepted by the Arbitrator after this cut-off date.

8. Extensions of Time

  1. Initial Response Extension:  Upon request Brief will grant a fifteen (15) day extension to the defendant/respondent to file and upload their first response to a claim.  Such a request should be sent to [email protected] identifying the claim number and the names of the disputing parties.  The defendant/respondent must join the platform as a prerequisite to the granting of any initial response extension as provided in the claim initiation notice provided by Brief.   
  2. All other Extensions:  If a party requires an extension of any of the other deadlines or dates (other than its initial response date) it must request such extension at least 48 hours before any deadline in writing to [email protected].  Extensions are solely at the discretion of Brief or the Arbitrator.  These extensions, if granted, will not be more than seven (7) days in all circumstances.

9. Discovery

  1. The parties do not engage in direct discovery.  To be clear, there are no inter-party interrogatories, requests for production, requests for admission or depositions.
  2. As set forth below, only the Arbitrator can make inquiries of the parties.
    1. The Arbitrator, at his or her discretion, is permitted to make inquiries, demands or requests to the parties.
    2. Any Arbitrator demand for discovery will always be copied to both parties (even if such request pertains to one party) so that there is complete transparency of the Arbitrator’s request and so that each party is given an opportunity to review the response.
    3. The Arbitrator will submit all inquiries or discovery questions to both parties through the BRIEF platform only.
    4. Communications or submissions by the parties will not be considered if they are not submitted through the BRIEF platform.
    5. The Arbitrator, at his or her discretion, can ask any relevant question or inquiry or seek any production of documents (or things) necessary for him or her to render a final decision.
    6. The Arbitrator, at his or her discretion, can seek live testimony from either party if the Arbitrator determines that it is necessary to render a decision.  Live testimony, if required, will be subject to additional charges to the parties.

10. Cross-claims and Counter-claims

  1. Cross-claims and Counter-claims are treated by BRIEF for pricing purposes  as new claims.  However, these claims, if appropriate, will be deemed related and administered jointly by the same arbitrator.   

11. Arbitrator Qualifications and Requirements

  1. Arbitrations shall be conducted by one neutral Arbitrator.
  2. All Arbitrators must be impartial, neutral and fair and must not have any bias in his or her decision making process.  
  3. Arbitrators must have at least ten (10) years-experience in a specific industry or profession.
  4. BRIEF SMALL CLAIMS Arbitrators must have at least three (3) years-experience in a specific industry or profession.
  5. If the BRIEF Arbitrator is an attorney, he or she must have a valid bar license in the State in which he or she practices law and must not have any bar discipline on their record.
  6. If the Arbitrator is located in a State in which certification is required to act as an Arbitrator, that Arbitrator is responsible for obtaining that certificate and providing a copy of that certificate to BRIEF for its records.  Such certificates will be made available to any party using the BRIEF platform upon written request.  
  7. If an Arbitrator is subject to any formal disciplinary action by a licensing agency or governmental agency, he or she must immediately report that disciplinary action and the nature of the claims to EJUDICATE. 

12. Arbitrator Assignments

  1. Arbitrator assignments are managed by the BRIEF platform and its administrators.  Arbitrators are selected based on location, subject matter expertise, licensure and other factors.  
  2. The disputing parties do not participate in the Arbitrator selection process.
  3. The Arbitrator must clear all conflicts of interest prior to taking on any BRIEF assignment.  The conflict clearance must comply with all State and/or other Bar requirements and must be confirmed in writing to BRIEF before a matter is assigned to the Arbitrator.  

13. Fees and Sanctions

  1. The Arbitrator may order appropriate sanctions for failure of a party to comply with his/her/its obligations under any of these rules. 
  2. These sanctions may include, but are not limited to, assessment of costs, exclusion of certain evidence, or in extreme cases ruling adversely on an issue submitted to arbitration against the party who has failed to comply.
  3. Unless otherwise agreed to by Brief, fees will be paid by the Plaintiff to initiate the claim.  
  4. The Arbitrator at his or her discretion as part of a Final Award, may rule on including attorneys’ fees, costs (including the cost of Brief) and other remuneration to the prevailing party.  

14. Awards

  1. Once rendered an Arbitrator’s award is final (“Final Award”).  Awards cannot be modified or edited after they are issued other than at the Arbitrator’s sole discretion.  
  2. As provided for in the BRIEF platform, all fees and costs must be submitted as part of the claim or defense and cannot be amended or changed after the issuance of a Final Award.   
  3. Brief and its staff do not participate or have any input whatsoever in the Arbitrator’s Final Award. 

15. Appeals

  1. Typically a Final Award issued by BRIEF cannot be appealed unless your agreement or contract specifically provides for an appeal process.
  2. If you have any questions about your Final Award please send your inquiry to [email protected] 

16. Document Submission Specifications

  1. The BRIEF evidence and testimony submission portal can support the following types of electronic or digital submissions:
    1. .png
    2. .jpg
    3. .jpeg
    4. .pdf
  2. If you submit a document that is not compliant with the supported formats, it may not be reviewed or considered.

17. Administration Issues

  1. At its discretion, BRIEF may contact the parties by telephone or email to review procedural matters.
  2. If a party has an administrative question it should submit its question to [email protected].

18. Confidentiality

  1. The arbitrator shall maintain the confidential nature of the arbitration proceeding and the Award unless otherwise required by law or judicial decision.
  2. The arbitrator may issue orders to protect the confidentiality of proprietary information. 
  3. All records, documents and testimony provided are subject to these Rules and the BRIEF Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. 

19. Termination, Stay or Withdrawal from Arbitration

  1. No party may terminate or withdraw from an arbitration after the appointment of the arbitrator except by written agreement of all parties to the arbitration. 
  2. Brief reserves the right to administratively stay or terminate any proceeding at any time for any reason.
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— Great, you've got your arbitration clause, but now what? —

Three important tips when updating your agreement with the Brief arbitration clause: 

With your Brief arbitration clause, you now have your venue: Brief’s Online Platform. You’ll have your jurisdiction: All disputes arising from the Agreement will be decided exclusively by Brief, and lastly, you’ll have your choice of law to be applied.

Keep in mind that these are suggestions and not legal advice. Whenever you update your agreements, it’s essential that you have an attorney review and approve.