News & Analysis as of

California Court Determines Arbitrator Must Decide Whether Class Claims Are Subject to Arbitration Agreement

When an employee who has signed an arbitration agreement files a lawsuit alleging individual claims along with class action claims, and the trial court has ordered him to take his individual claims to arbitration, what...more

Want to Arbitrate Employee Disputes? Keep Your Paperwork!

Arbitration agreements, and their use as a means to avoid class action disputes in particular, have been repeat news items in the last several years, and many companies continue to consider their use as a means to mitigate...more

Is a FLSA Collective Action Waiver by Itself in a Severance Agreement Enforceable? Sixth Circuit Says “No.”

Employers have recently enjoyed some victories in the U.S. Supreme Court and in the California Supreme Court regarding the use of class/collective action waivers in employment arbitration agreements (e.g. Italian Colors and...more

Got Proof? Court Requires Proof Employees Signed Arbitration Agreement to Compel Arbitration

Arbitration agreements, and their use as a means to avoid class action disputes in particular, have been repeat news items in the last several years, and many employers continue to consider their use as a means to mitigate...more

It’s a Whole New Game in Opalinski v. Robert Half International, Inc. – Third Circuit Rules That Courts Decide the Availability of...

There are significant differences between individual (or “bilateral”) arbitration and classwide arbitration that can substantially affect the nature of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism. Individual arbitration can...more

Fenwick Employment Brief - August 2014

Partial-Day Leave Deductions Lawful for Exempt Employees - A California court of appeal recently confirmed that employers may require exempt employees to use accrued leave for partial-day absences, even if shorter than...more

The Third Circuit Joins The Sixth And Holds That The Availability Of Class Arbitration Is A Substantive Question Of Arbitrability...

“Because of the fundamental differences between classwide and individual arbitration, and the consequences of proceeding with one rather than the other, … the availability of classwide arbitration is a substantive ‘question...more

Third Circuit Says Classwide Arbitration a Matter for Courts to Decide

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled last week that courts, not arbitrators, should determine whether an agreement between two parties to arbitrate employment disputes allows for classwide arbitration....more

Third Circuit Holds That a Court, Not an Arbitrator, Must Decide Whether an Arbitration Agreement Authorizes Class-wide...

Who decides whether an arbitration agreement allows for class-wide arbitration — a court or an arbitrator? In the wake of mixed signals from the U.S. Supreme Court, lower courts have been reluctant to answer this question....more

Third Circuit Holds that Courts, Not Arbitrators, Should Rule on Classwide Arbitration

In Opalinski v. Robert Half International, Inc., the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that where an arbitration clause is silent as to the availability of classwide arbitration, that issue should...more

Clicking “I Agree” Renders Mandatory Arbitration Provision Enforceable

Day in and day out, Internet users sign various forms of agreements for a variety of reasons, from joining a dating site, to participating in an online auction, to uploading media to a storage locker. These agreements,...more

Class Arbitration–A Gateway Issue for the Court

In Opalinski v. Robert Half International, Inc., No. 12-4444 (3d Cir. July 30, 2014), former employees brought claims on behalf of themselves and others against Robert Half International (“RHI”) for unpaid overtime. The...more

Uncertainty Remains Regarding the NLRB's Position on Class and Collective Action Waivers

The law concerning class action waivers continues to develop at a rapid pace. While most courts are now enforcing class action waivers in arbitration agreements, there remains at least one prominent area of uncertainty for...more

Caveat Empty Box

In a strong defense victory from earlier this year, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California denied a proposed class of laptop purchasers the opportunity to proceed against Toshiba as a class, instead...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Use of Class Action Waivers in Employment Arbitration Agreements, But PAGA Claims May Not Be...

In a prior Alert dated June 11, 2012, we reported on a California appellate court decision in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC ("Iskanian"), which upheld the use of class and representative action waivers in...more

Arbitrator To Decide Whether Arbitration Agreement Provides For Class Arbitration

A majority of the United States Supreme Court has never reached agreement on whether the court or an arbitrator should decide the issue of whether an agreement allows or precludes class arbitration. In Sandquist v. Lebo...more

Change To Handbook Arbitration Policy—Adding Class Action Waiver—Was Valid And Enforceable

On the same day that the California Supreme Court issued Iskanian, another important ruling with respect to class action arbitration waivers was issued by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In Davis v. Nordstrom, the court...more

California Employees Can Waive Class Claims In An Arbitration Agreement, But Not PAGA Claims

Resolving an issue that has created uncertainty for California employers, the California Supreme Court recently held in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC that class action waivers in employment arbitration...more

Perspectives - Fall 2012 Volume 3, Edition 2: An Executive Compensation, Benefits & Human Resources Law Update

In this Issue: - Don’t “Moench”ion It: Supreme Court Rejects Presumption of Prudence for ESOP Fiduciaries - Avoiding Claims of Excessive Fund Fees - Risk of ERISA Class Actions Can Be Reduced by Use of...more

Class Claim Arbitration Waivers Win Big in Ninth Circuit

In two cases from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on June 23, 2014, arbitration agreements won big on the class-claims waiver issue. This is good news for the employers operating in the Ninth Circuit, and California in...more

California District Court Rejects Shotgun Attacks on Arbitration Agreements

Alright, we all know in the wake of Italian Colors, Concepcion, and now many other cases that the presumption of arbitrability isn’t just a doctrine to recite in the manner of saying grace before invalidating an agreement,...more

Sixth Circuit: No Arbitration of Pending Claims

In a reversal from a streak of previous decisions in favor of arbitration, the Sixth Circuit in Russell v. Citigroup, Inc., No. 13-5994, — F.3d — (6th Cir. 2014), recently declined to hold that an agreement to arbitrate “all...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Validity Of Class Action Waivers In Employment Arbitration Agreements; Prohibits Waivers For...

The California Supreme Court has upheld the validity of class action waivers in employment arbitration agreements, reversing its prior rule that California courts could refuse to enforce such waivers on grounds of public...more

U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Petition that Proceeding as a Collective Action Under the FLSA is a Non-Waivable Substantive...

In the last week, we have seen several significant decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court. On Monday, however, the Court made a noteworthy “non-decision” by declining a petition for certiorari that raised the question of...more

Class Action Waivers Good in California, PAGA Waivers Perhaps

In an important decision on employment arbitration agreements with pre-dispute class and collective action waivers, in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation of Los Angeles the California Supreme Court held that U.S. Supreme Court...more

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