Overview

The Claims Resolution Tribunal

The Independent Committee of Eminent Persons (ICEP) was established by a Memorandum of Understanding between the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), the World Jewish Congress (WJC), and the Swiss Bankers Association (SBA). The Chairman of ICEP is Mr. Paul A. Volcker, former Chairman of the US Federal Reserve Board. ICEP's aim was to resolve all claims to dormant accounts, defined to include accounts opened by non-Swiss customers that have been inactive since the end of the Second World War (May 9, 1945) and which were made public by the Swiss Bankers Association.

ICEP and the Swiss Federal Banking Commission [1] jointly established an Independent Claims Resolution Foundation (the "Foundation") to create and to monitor a Claims Resolution Tribunal (the "Tribunal"). The Tribunal adjudicated all claims to dormant accounts submitted to it. The Board of Trustees of the Foundation consisted of Mr. Paul A. Volcker, Prof. Renè Rhinow, a law professor and Chairman of the Swiss Senate, and Israel Singer, Secretary General of the World Jewish Congress.

The Board of Trustees adopted the rules of procedure to be used by the Tribunal. It also appointed the Chairman of the Tribunal, Prof. Hans Michael Riemer, a professor of law at the University of Zurich and an experienced judge, the Vice Chairman of the Tribunal, Roberts Owen an experienced arbitration expert and former legal adviser to the U.S. State Department, and fifteen (15) arbitrators from the United States, Canada, England, Switzerland, Israel, Cyprus and Belgium. The arbitrators were chosen for their extensive experience in international arbitration or banking matters and were appointed to resolve claims in a fair and just manner. The arbitrators were assisted in their work by a group of lawyers from many countries who took time off from their regular practice to work full-time at the Tribunal for a specific period.

The Board of Trustees was not itself resolving any claims to dormant accounts. This was the task of the Tribunal.

On 30 September 2001 the Tribunal completed its assignment regarding the resolution of claims to dormant accounts published in 1997.

 

 


1 The Swiss Federal Banking Commission is the public supervising entity for the Swiss banks.


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