Federal Arbitration Act Class Action

The Federal Arbitration Act is a United States federal statute enacted in 1925 that governs arbitration in contracts implicating interstate commerce. The Act applies in both federal and state courts. 
News & Analysis as of

Ninth Circuit Invalidates Arbitration Agreement with Class Action Waiver

On August 22, 2016, the Ninth Circuit joined the Seventh Circuit in the split amongst U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal on the issue of enforceability of employment arbitration agreements precluding class actions. The Ninth...more

Ninth Circuit, California Appellate Court Take Aim at Arbitration Agreements

The Ninth Circuit and the California Court of Appeal have each issued decisions that may fundamentally affect how employers deal with arbitration agreements in the future. In Morris v. Ernst & Young, the Ninth Circuit held...more

Ninth Circuit Sides with NLRB in Divide over Employee Arbitration Waiver Agreements

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit announced this week that it agrees with the National Labor Relations Board that individual arbitration waiver agreements, which prevent employees from filing or participating in...more

West Coast—Time to Check Your Employment Agreements: Ninth Circuit Negates No-Class Action Clause in Arbitration Agreements

This week, the Ninth Circuit held that Ernst & Young’s (E&Y) arbitration agreement that prohibited its employees from filing class actions violates the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). E&Y required as a condition of...more

Five Arbitration Cases You Should Know (Blogiversary Listicle #3)

I am celebrating five years of blogging by publishing one “listicle” per day this week. Monday, the topic was the five biggest surprises in arbitration law; Tuesday it was the five states most hostile to arbitration. (None...more

And Now There Are Two: The Ninth Circuit Strikes Class Arbitration Waivers Joining the Seventh Circuit on Finding that these...

Seyfarth Synopsis: The Ninth Circuit joined the Seventh Circuit and the NLRB in finding that mandatory arbitration agreements that require all claims to be brought by employees on an individual basis violate the NLRA. On...more

Ninth Circuit Holds that Arbitration Provision Prohibiting Concerted Actions Violates the National Labor Relations Act and is...

In Morris v. Ernst & Young, LLP (hereinafter “Morris”), the Ninth Circuit held that an arbitration provision prohibiting the filing of concerted actions, signed as a condition of employment, violated the National Labor...more

Ninth Circuit Finds Arbitration Agreement That Required Employees to Bring Claims in “Separate Proceedings” Illegal Under the NLRA

On August 22, 2016, in Morris et al. v. Ernst & Young, LLP, a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit followed the lead of the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) and the U.S Court of Appeals for the...more

Ninth Circuit Strikes Class Arb Waivers

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals weighed in, today, on the propriety of class action arbitration waivers under the NLRA. The Court held that such waivers violate Sections 7 and 8 of the NLRA in the context of a pending...more

California Supreme Court Holds “No Universal Rule” Exists When Deciding Who Should Determine Availability of Classwide Arbitration

On July 28, 2016, the California Supreme Court added to the ever-changing body of case law regarding classwide arbitration when it held that “no universal rule” exists regarding who (the court or the arbitrator) should decide...more

California Supreme Court Holds That Arbitrator, Not Court, May Determine If Arbitration Agreement Permits Class Arbitration

The California Supreme Court has held that an arbitrator, rather than a court, has the power to decide whether class claims can proceed in arbitration, where the parties’ arbitration agreement is ambiguous on the question....more

Absent Express Contract, Arbitrator, Not Court, Rules On Class Arbitrability

Seyfarth Synopsis: The California Supreme Court, in Sandquist v. Lebo Automotive, deviated from rulings of most federal circuit courts to hold that the question of “who decides” whether class arbitration is available—courts...more

California Supreme Court Holds that Whether Arbitration Will Proceed on Class Basis is an Issue for Arbitrator, not Court

California’s back-and-forth on arbitrations and class actions continued again this week. In a key 4-3 decision the California Supreme Court held that the arbitrator—not the court—can decide whether an arbitration...more

Court Grants Motion To Stay Action Pending Arbitration, And Found That Issue Of Whether Arbitration Clause Allows For Class...

In this case, Jeffrey Hedrick brought an action in Kansas federal court on behalf of himself and others similarly situated under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) against BNC National Bank, Hedrick’s employer. The bank...more

Seventh Circuit Finds Class Action Waivers Unlawful

On May 26, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Lewis v. Epic Systems Corporation, held that when an employer conditions continued employment upon the signing of a class or collective action waiver in an...more

Ban Proposed on Mandatory Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreements by Schools Receiving Title IV Aid for Student Borrowers

The U.S. Department of Education has issued a proposed rule that includes a ban on mandatory pre-dispute arbitration agreements by schools receiving Title IV assistance under the Higher Education Act (HEA) and a new federal...more

Seventh Circuit Holds Class Action Waivers are Unlawful and Unenforceable Creating a Circuit Split

On May 26, 2016, in the matter of Lewis v. Epic Systems Corporation, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit held that an arbitration agreement, which required employees to submit to individual arbitration for any...more

Circuit Courts Weigh Employee Arbitration Waiver Agreements with Divergent Results

Conflicting decisions issued within one week of each other from the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Seventh and Eighth Circuits exemplify the ongoing debate in circuit courts across the country about the enforceability of...more

Out On A Limb, 7th Circuit Creates Circuit Split Over Class Arbitration For Employees

Of all the federal circuit courts, I was not expecting the 7th Circuit to venture out on a limb to support the NLRB’s interpretation of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) as precluding class arbitration waivers. ...more

Circuit Split Develops Over The Enforceability Of Class Waivers In Employment Agreements

Affirming a district court’s denial of a motion to compel arbitration, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has held unenforceable a provision of an employment agreement mandating that wage-and-hour...more

Score One for the NLRB: Seventh Circuit Becomes First Federal Appeals Court to Hold that Class/Collective Action Waivers in...

The Seventh Circuit recently became the first federal appellate court to say that employers can’t prevent class/collective actions through waivers in mandatory arbitration agreements, holding that such waivers interfere with...more

Seventh Circuit Holds That Collective and Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements are Unenforceable

The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals held that collective and class action waivers contained in arbitration agreements with employees are unenforceable and violate the National Labor Relations Act. Reaching the opposite...more

Lewis v. Epic Systems Opinion – Seventh Circuit Swimming Against the Tide on Mandatory Individual Arbitration

In a sweeping May 26 opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit shook up the arbitral landscape and created a remarkable circuit split regarding the enforceability of arbitration agreements with class action...more

Seventh Circuit Finds Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements are Illegal and Unenforceable under the NLRA

On May 26, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued its decision in Lewis v. Epic-Systems Corp., finding that the company's arbitration agreement, which prohibits employees from participating in “any...more

Fourth Circuit Considers Whether Arbitration Agreement Was Binding Where Parties Modified Contract Through Conduct

In early April, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals considered whether an arbitration agreement was “a written provision” for purposes of the Federal Arbitration Act where the parties modified the contract through their...more

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