This section is from the book "The Law Of Contracts", by William Herbert Page. Also available from Amazon: Commercial Contracts: A Practical Guide to Deals, Contracts, Agreements and Promises.
A general provision in advance for arbitration is inoperative and it does not oust the jurisdiction of the courts.1 Notwithstanding such provision, either party may bring an action upon the contract without submitting to arbitration, if the provision for arbitration is not made a condition precedent, or if it does not provide for determining the existence of some specific fact.2 A general provision in advance for submission of disputes to arbitration, can not be modified by construction so as to provide for the assessment of damagss by arbitration, and it can not thus be made a condition precedent.3
3Bracton's Notebook, 649 and 732.
"Compromiserunt se in arbitros," Bracton's Notebook, 649.
"Posuerant se in arbitros," Bracton's Notebook, 732.
4 A great number of authorities are collected under the title "Arbitre-ment" in Statham's Abridgment;, in Fitzherbert's Grande Abridgment, ff. 43 et seq.; and in Rolle's Abridgment, 242 et seq.
5 Kyd on Awards (second edition), p. 4.
8 Burke Grain Co. v. Stinchcomb, - Okla. - , 173 Pac. 204.
7Meloy v. Imperial Land Co., 163 Cal. 99, 124 Pac. 712; Johnsen v. Wineman, 34 N. D. 116, 157 N. W. 679; Columbus, etc., Ry. v. Burke, 54 O. S. 98, 43 N. E. 282.
8Burkland v. Johnson, 50 Neb. 858, 70 N. W. 388; Columbus, etc., Ry. v. Burke, 54 O. 8. 98, 43 N. E. 282.
Contra, on the theory that if the parties intended statutory arbitration. they can not be held to common law arbitration. Deerfield v. Arms, 37 Mass. (20 Pick.) 480, 32 Am. Dec. 228.
1 United States. Aktieselskabet Korn-og Foderstof Kompagniet v. Rederiaktiebolaget Atlanten, 250 Fed. 935.
Alabama. Headley v. Aetna Ins. Co., - Ala. - , 80 So. 466.