Court Orders Southridge Partners Limited Partnership Dispute to Arbitration

The Delaware Chancery Court is dismissing Aris Multi-Strategy Fund LP’s action to obtain access to Southridge Partners LP books and records and sending the case to arbitration. Aris is a Southridge limited partner. According to Chancellor William Chandler III, arbitration for this case is contractually mandated.

Aris is seeking access to Southridge’s records and books. Aris claims that Southridge has not responded to requests for information.

According to the court, because this dispute is one regarding “the partnership,” it is subject to the LP Agreement terms that mandate arbitration. The court also noted that the arbitration provision doesn’t limit the arbitrator from resolving disputes other than those involving the LP Agreement. Also, while parties may ask that an arbitrator limit its authority only to disputes involving the agreement, the arbitrator can say no. This means that the arbitrator is allowed to determine whether to resolve the books and records dispute.

Judge Chandler determined that the Delaware Revised Uniform Limited Partnership Act lets partners contractually agree to enter books and records actions to arbitration. The court also says that Aris’s contention that inspection rights cannot be determined by an arbitrator because the Chancery Court has exclusive jurisdiction is incorrect. It stated that 6 Del. C. §17-109(d) lets a limited partner wave its right to bring actions involving a limited partnership’s internal affairs or organization to the Delaware Courts as long as it agrees to arbitrate its actions.

Related Web Resources:
Aris Multi-Strategy Fund LP v. Southridge Partners LP, Del Court Opinion (PDF)

Delaware Revised Uniform Limited Partnership Act

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