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Third Circuit Goes On Formation Tour — Issues Arbitration Decisions Favoring Prisoners and Pistachio Buyers

In the past week, the Third Circuit has issued two important decisions on the formation of arbitration agreements. (Sing it Beyoncé! “Okay ladies, now let’s get in formation.”) In one, a class action was allowed to proceed...more

2016 in Arbitration Law: Fleeting Victories for Consumer Advocates?

If I had drafted this annual summary post on November 7, 2016, it would have looked different. At that point, the year had produced numerous (final or proposed) federal regulations that significantly restricted the use of...more

8th Circuit Expands Arbitral Immunity Doctrine

A per curiam opinion from the 8th Circuit last week highlights that even if an arbitration goes off the rails, the only remedy is vacating (or confirming) the award. The parties cannot recover from the administrator of the...more

Arbitrator’s False Credentials Are Sufficient To Vacate Award

In most circumstances, the Federal Arbitration Act requires that the losing party move to vacate an arbitration award within three months. However, the Ninth Circuit recently ruled that the three-month timeline can be...more

Lessons From Recently Vacated Arbitration Awards

While I was busy blogging out listicles and “think pieces” last month, my stack of unread arbitration cases grew exponentially.  August was apparently a very busy month for publishing arbitration opinions.  Maybe most...more

Federal Courts Teach Arbitration 101 In Recent Opinions

While state courts have been busy articulating novel interpretations of arbitration law this summer, federal courts seem intent on getting back to basics. In recent weeks, federal appellate courts have reminded parties who...more

Three Blockbuster Summer Arbitration Decisions

While regular people count down the days to summer blockbusters that come in the form of high-paid actors fighting aliens or robots, I prefer my summer blockbusters in the form of arbitration opinions that have been months in...more

9th Circuit Narrows Grounds For Vacating Labor Arbitration Awards

Finding that some of its previous pronouncements were leading district court judges astray, the Ninth Circuit clarified its precedent regarding the scope of review of labor arbitration awards. “We conclude that it is time for...more

Unvacating Arbitration Awards: Quarterbacks and Car Accidents

The Second Circuit reminded us yesterday that judicial review of arbitration awards is “among the most deferential in the law.” And when district courts are not sufficiently deferential, their decisions are likely to be...more

Fifth Circuit Finds Federal Jurisdiction Over $10,000 Arbitration Award

The Fifth Circuit recently addressed a hard question: what should the court consider when determining the amount in controversy for purposes of federal jurisdiction over an arbitration award? The court decided to rely on the...more

2015: Arbitration Inches Toward Center Stage

Arbitration case law did not break any new ground in 2015. Instead, a larger sector of the public became aware of the ground already broken in 2011 and 2013, as well as how common arbitration is in professional...more

Want To Vacate Arbitration Award For Bias? Hawaii Is Here To Help.

The Supreme Court of Hawaii ruled recently that if a neutral arbitrator fails to meet disclosure requirements, it constitutes “evident partiality” as a matter of law, and requires the vacatur of the arbitrator’s award. ...more

Final Means Final: No Reconsideration in Arbitration

Recent decisions from the 3d and 11th Circuits drive home this point: an arbitration award is final and should not be revisited. In Robinson v. Littlefield, 2015 WL 5520017 (3d Cir. Sept. 17, 2015), the parties...more

Musings on Tom Brady and Arbitrator Bias

Again this year, a famous athlete put the spotlight on the process of arbitration.  Earlier this month, Tom Brady succeeded in convincing a federal judge to vacate the arbitration award against Brady.  (The four-game...more

Circuit Split Persists Regarding Whether Arbitrator’s “Manifest Disregard” Of Law Can Vacate Arbitration Award

Three years ago, this blog catalogued where all the federal circuits stood on the issue of whether an arbitration award that “manifestly disregarded the law” could be vacated under the Federal Arbitration Act, as that is not...more

Spring Vacations: Which arguments are winning on appeals from arbitration so far in 2015?

Today I present a collection of recent state and federal appellate court decisions that vacate or un-vacate arbitration awards. The seven opinions below emphasize how difficult it is to prove that an arbitrator exceeded his...more

Fifth Circuit Finds Parties Can Authorize Arbitrators By Their Conduct

The Fifth Circuit un-vacated an arbitration award last week, holding the district court had wrongly concluded that the court was the proper decision-maker on contract formation.  Although courts are presumptively authorized...more

When Can A Party Recover Attorneys’ Fees Incurred Confirming An Arbitration Award?

If you won your arbitration, it is vexing to have to spend many thousands more in attorneys’ fees opposing a motion to vacate the arbitration award. (That is especially true if you signed up for arbitration thinking it was...more

5th Circuit Vacates Arbitration Award Conducted By Wrong Arbitrator Under Wrong Rules

Let’s say your arbitration agreement calls for arbitration administered by JAMS under JAMS rules, but the arbitrator is independent and applies AAA rules, over one party’s objection.  A new decision from the Fifth Circuit...more

Why The Arbitration Award Against Adrian Peterson Was Vacated

A federal judge in Minnesota today vacated the arbitration award that confirmed the NFL’s discipline of Adrian Peterson.  You can read the decision here.  The judge found two separate bases for vacating the award: 1) the...more

2/27/2015  /  Arbitration , Arbitration Awards , CBAs , NFL

Lessons From Lance Armstrong About the Finality of Arbitration Awards

On February 4, an arbitration panel ordered Lance Armstrong to pay $10 million to his former promotions company, SCA, as a result of his “unparalleled pageant of international perjury, fraud and conspiracy” that covered up...more

Fifth Circuit Un-Vacates Arbitration Award, Offering Guidance to District Courts

“When an arbitration goes an opponent’s way on the basis of questionable contract interpretation, parties often seek refuge in [Section] 10(a)(4).  But the Supreme Court has made clear that district courts’ review of...more

Who Decides Whether New Claims Are Precluded By Old Arbitration? An Arbitrator, Says 2d Circuit

We all know that the doctrines of issue preclusion (collateral estoppel) and claim preclusion (res judicata) apply with equal force to both arbitration awards and court orders. But, if your adversary brings new claims that...more

Second Circuit Un-Vacates Arbitration Award, Finding No Manifest Disregard

The Second Circuit reversed a district court’s vacatur of an arbitration award this week, finding that the arbitration panel did not manifestly disregard the law when it refused the respondent’s reading of a state statute. ...more

New Survey Dispels Common Myths About Arbitration

Did you know that 87% of experienced arbitrators report *always* trying to follow applicable law in rendering an award? That will come as a surprise to many critics who like to complain that arbitrators do not adhere to...more

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