Arbitration Agreements

News & Analysis as of

Labor and Employment News: Deflategate: Limited Ability to Appeal Arbitration Awards

Nearly all collective bargaining agreements have an arbitration clause for deciding any disputes under the agreement. Beyond the labor arena, employers have increasingly mandated arbitration as the designated forum for...more

Going on the Offensive: How Retail and Restaurant Employers Can Mitigate Risk by Implementing Mandatory Arbitration Agreements

Over the past several years, there has been a growing trend of retail and restaurant businesses requiring their employees to sign mandatory arbitration agreements. Why? When properly drafted, mandatory arbitration...more

Wavering on Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements

Last week’s enormous settlements of up to $100 million in class action cases against Uber were reminders of the ongoing opposition to class action and other joint action waivers in arbitration agreements. The same is true of...more

Seventh Circuit Holds No Agreement Entered Into With Respect To On-Line Contract

This case arises from an appeal from an Illinois federal district court, which ruled that TransUnion, a credit reporting agency, did not give a putative class of its website users proper notice of an arbitration agreement,...more

California Appeals Court Provides Guidance on the Use of Electronic Signatures by Employees

In many companies, new employees sign key documents and policies—including arbitration agreements—with the use of electronic signatures. There has been a growing trend in litigation brought by former employees to challenge...more

Express Yourself! Ongoing Split Over Class Arbitration Points to Importance of Clear Provisions

Despite the numerous Supreme Court decisions limiting class arbitrations, one central issue remains undecided: who decides whether an arbitration agreement permits class arbitration, the courts or the arbitrators? Entities...more

New York’s Highest Court Enforces Arbitration Provision in California Workers’ Compensation Insurance Agreement, Rejecting...

A recent ruling by the New York State Court of Appeals underscores the Federal Arbitration Act’s(“FAA”) strong policy favoring enforcement of arbitration agreements—even in the insurance industry and despite federal policy...more

“The ABC’S of ACB’S” – Arbitration Clauses in Bankruptcy Court

You’ve decided that your business will fare better if you put a mandatory arbitration clause into all of your contracts. You want to be fair to your counterparty, so you choose to arbitrate under the Federal Arbitration Act....more

CFPB Announces May 5 Field Hearing on Arbitration

The CFPB announced that it is holding a field hearing on May 5, 2016, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on arbitration. Previously, CFPB field hearings have resulted in the announcement of proposed rules. We anticipate that this...more

Judgment in Maritime Arbitration Matter

Legal Principle - Even if a Bill of Lading does not expressly contain an arbitration clause it might refer disputes to arbitration through the charterparty which may include an arbitration clause. The reference to...more

Untangling the Webb of Arbitrability: The Fourth Circuit Holds That Courts Determine the Availability of Class-Wide Arbitration

Is the availability of class-wide arbitration a “gateway” question for courts, or are arbitrators charged with such a decision once a matter is compelled to them? In Dell Webb Communities, Inc. v. Carlson, the Fourth Circuit...more

Arbitration Plan Contained in Employee Handbook Enforceable? Not Without Savings Clause, Fifth Circuit Says

In Nelson v. Watch House International, L.L.C., (No. 15-10531), the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a district court decision dismissing an employee’s lawsuit against his employer and compelling arbitration. The Fifth...more

Annulment Covers Everything

In case of annulment of contract containing an arbitration clause the annulment shall extend to all clauses of the contract including the arbitration clause....more

Federal Courts Lack Jurisdiction Over Enforcement Of Foreign Judgments, Even Where Judgment Is Inconsistent With Earlier...

Plaintiff Albaniabeg, power plant operator, sought enforcement of an Albanian judgment in a New York state court against defendant Italian power companies. Section 205 of the FAA permits removal of an action that relates to...more

Proposed Legislation Would Set Back Corporations’ Use of Arbitration Clauses

The Restoring Statutory Rights Act of 2016, sponsored by Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy, was sent to congressional committee on February 4, 2016 for consideration. The bill would place restrictions on companies’ use...more

Class Actions and the Continued Significance of Arbitration Agreements

The recently released Carlton Fields 2016 Class Action Survey reports that class actions are up for the first time in four years. While data privacy class actions still make up a relatively small portion of class action...more

Ninth Circuit: Arbitration Provision Contained In Sham Agreement Is Not Enforceable

The Ninth Circuit reversed a district court ruling that had compelled arbitration, holding that a party may not enforce an arbitration agreement where the clause is contained in a nonbinding contract. The parties had entered...more

A Troubling Decision for Employment Arbitration Agreements with Potentially Ambiguous Language and What it Means for Employers...

On April 5, 2016, in a rare rebuke of an employment arbitration agreement by a federal court, the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey (Hon. Madeline Cox Arleo, U.S.D.J.) held that it would not compel...more

California Court of Appeal Weighs in on Enforceable “Browsewrap” Arbitration Agreements in ProFlowers Case

The California Court of Appeal (2d App. Dist., Div. 3) recently joined the ever-evolving body of case law addressing the enforceability of so-called “browsewrap” arbitration agreements. In Long v. Provide Commerce, Inc., —...more

Fourth Circuit: Courts, Not Arbitrators, Decide If Arbitration Agreement Authorizes Class-Wide Arbitration

A unanimous panel of the Fourth Circuit has held Del Webb Communities, Inc. v. Carlson that the question whether an arbitration agreement authorizes class-wide arbitration is for the courts, not an arbitrator, to...more

Carbajal v. HWBSC Decision Provides Guidance for Drafting Employment Arbitration Agreements

On February 26, 2016, the California Court of Appeal, Fourth District, issued its decision in Carbajal v. HWBSC, Inc., invalidating an employment arbitration agreement due to a number of provisions the Court considered...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Arbitration Agreements That Mutually Exclude Applications for Temporary Restraining Orders and...

On Monday, March 28, 2016, the California Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Second Appellate District holding that an arbitration agreement in an employment contract is not substantively unconscionable simply because...more

Beware the Scrollable Window: The Seventh Circuit Strikes Down an Internet Contract

If you’re like us—and most others, we’ll venture to guess—you’ve never read all the terms and conditions of the iTunes end-user license agreement. We doubt that it’s a scintillating read, but, regardless, most...more

Court OKs Arbitration Agreement Permitting Injunctive Relief

Seyfarth Synopsis in a Second: A clause in an employment arbitration agreement that authorizes preliminary injunctive relief in court does not make the agreement unenforceable. As a general proposition, arbitration...more

Beware the “Non-Exclusive” Arbitration Clause

“Non-exclusive” arbitration clauses provide that disputes “may” be referred to arbitration (rather than “shall” or “should” be so referred). The Privy Council clarified the nature of these clauses in a recent case but...more

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