50-47. Hearing.

Unless otherwise provided by the parties' written agreement:

(1) The arbitrators shall appoint a time and place for the hearing and notify the parties or their counsel by personal service or by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, not less than five days before the hearing. Appearance of a party at the hearing waives any claim of deficiency of notice. The arbitrators may adjourn the hearing from time to time as necessary and, on request of a party and for good cause shown, or upon their own motion, may postpone the hearing to a time not later than the date fixed by the written agreement for making the award unless the parties consent to a later date. The arbitrators may hear and determine the controversy upon the evidence produced notwithstanding the failure of a party duly notified to appear. Upon application of a party, the court may direct the arbitrators to proceed promptly with the hearing and determination of the controversy.

(2) The parties are entitled to be heard, to present evidence material to the controversy, and to cross-examine witnesses appearing at the hearing.

(3) All the arbitrators shall conduct the hearing, but a majority may determine any question and may render a final award. If, during the course of the hearing, an arbitrator for any reason ceases to act, the remaining arbitrators appointed to act as neutrals may continue with the hearing and determination of the controversy.

(4) Upon request of any party or at the election of any arbitrator, the arbitrators shall cause to be made a record of testimony and evidence introduced at the hearing. The arbitrators shall decide how the cost of the record will be apportioned. (1999-185, s. 1; 2005-187, s. 7.)