Mandatory Arbitration Clauses

News & Analysis as of

NJ Employers May Need to Revisit Arbitration Clauses Following Appellate Division Ruling

On January 7, 2016, the New Jersey Appellate Division found that an arbitration provision contained in an Employee Handbook was unenforceable. This decision is of critical importance to New Jersey employers when it comes to...more

Employers Should Not Rely on Employer Handbooks to Create Enforceable Arbitration Agreements

In a recent published opinion, the New Jersey Appellate Division held that an arbitration clause in an employee handbook was unenforceable because the handbook also contained standard disclaimer language stating that the...more

Superior Court Explains When Arbitration Is Binding

As this decision explains, you can be bound by an arbitration clause even if you do not sign a contract containing such a provision. The issue is did you agree to be bound by that contract’s terms and if you did, then you are...more

Updates to New Hampshire’s “Dealer Bill of Rights”: What Equipment Manufacturers Need to Know

After two years of litigation, Senate Bill 126, which amended New Hampshire’s Motor Vehicle Franchise Act — the so-called “Auto Dealer’s Bill of Rights” (codified at RSA 357-C) — has survived scrutiny by the New Hampshire...more

SCOTUS Benchslaps Cali...Again

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a California Court of Appeals decision invalidating class action arbitration waivers. DIRECTV, Inc. v. Imburgia, (No. 14-462 December 14, 2015)....more

Cricket Wireless’s Bid to Enforce Arbitration Clause Against Customers Met with Mediocre Reception

On November 3, 2015, Judge Alsup of the Northern District of California denied Cricket Wireless’s motion to enforce an arbitration clause against customers who say they never saw or agreed to the clause. Plaintiffs...more

Fourth Circuit Says Mandatory Arbitration Agreement in Employee Handbook is Unenforceable

Employers seeking to avoid disputes in court with employees increasingly seek to use mandatory arbitration agreements. Typically, these agreements take the form of stand-alone written documents, signed by both parties....more

New Year's Resolution for Employers: Review Employee Handbooks and Agreements

A Nov. 24, 2015, decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, which has jurisdiction over the Carolinas, about an arbitration provision included in an employee handbook serves as a warning to employers to...more

Deciding Who Decides Questions of Arbitrability: A Survey of American Law and a Comparative Perspective

Parties to commercial disputes frequently encounter and litigate the threshold issue whether their dispute is within the scope of an arbitration clause and must therefore be arbitrated rather than litigated in court. Even...more

Does This Year’s Nobel Prize in Economics Suggest Any Lessons Regarding the Regulation of the Consumer Finance Industry?

On Monday October 12, 2015, Professor Angus Deaton won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science. Professor Deaton’s work focuses in part on consumer behavior, and, more specifically, on techniques used by researchers for...more

California Court of Appeal holds certain class action waivers may be unenforceable

Class action waivers have become common in consumer contracts, including sales agreements to purchase newly constructed residences and employment agreements, which may also contain arbitration clauses. After last year’s...more

Fifth Circuit Repeats Rejection of NLRB Ban on Class Action Waivers

When employers require employees to sign mandatory arbitration agreements, the agreements typically state that any subsequent arbitration must be brought in the employee’s individual capacity. In other words, the agreements...more

U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit Mandates a Stay of Litigation When All of the Disputed Claims Are Arbitrable

In Katz v. Cellco Partnership (July 28, 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit this summer clarified that district courts do not have discretion to dismiss a case that has been referred to arbitration. Instead,...more

Washington Employers, Be Careful When Demanding Arbitration Agreements from Current Employees

Yesterday, in case called Mayne v. Monaco Enterprises, Inc., a Washington Appellate Court struck down an arbitration clause because the employee faced immediate termination if he did not sign. The employee in this case had...more

Retail and Consumer Products Law Roundup - November 2015

We are pleased to share with you the first issue of Manatt's Retail and Consumer Products Law Roundup. The newsletter will be published on a monthly basis and will survey topics of critical importance to the retail,...more

Are English arbitration awards ‘final, conclusive and binding’? – revisiting the right to challenge arbitration awards in English...

Recent debate on the right to appeal - Under limited circumstances, a party to an English arbitration award who is dissatisfied with the result can challenge that award in the courts. There are concerns that the current...more

New Jersey Arbitration Agreements Should Explicitly Waive the Right to Bring Claims in Court

On October 26, 2015, in the case Barr v. Bishop Rosen & Co., the New Jersey Appellate Division issued its first published decision applying the New Jersey Supreme Court’s decision in Atalese v. U.S. Legal Services Group LP to...more

CFPB Launches New Battle: Proposal to Ban Arbitration Clauses Blocking Group Action

Why it matters - The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has picked its next battle: a proposal to limit the terms of mandatory pre-dispute arbitration agreements in contracts involving consumer financial...more

Governor Brown Vetoes Controversial AB 465

On October 11, 2015, Governor Brown vetoed the controversial AB 465, legislation that attempted to make a sweeping prohibition of all mandatory arbitration agreements as a condition of California employment. AB 465 required...more

The Supreme Court Preview, Part II: Tuning Up Arbitration Clauses

This is the second post in our series “The Supreme Court Preview,” - California state and federal courts have a rocky history with the U.S. Supreme Court, as the highest court in the land has repeatedly reversed the...more

Governor’s Pen Sends Anti-Employment Arbitration Bill to the Grave

On October 11—his very last day to sign or veto bills—Governor Brown vetoed the much-feared Assembly Bill 465. AB 465 would have banned mandatory agreements to arbitrate Labor Code claims as a condition of employment. At...more

The Beginning of the End of Arbitration Clauses in Consumer Finance Contracts?

Are contractual arbitration clauses harmful to consumers of financial products and services? The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (the “CFPB”) appears to think so. On March 10, 2015, the CFPB released its 2015 Arbitration...more

Policyholder Insider Quarterly

Some Words Are More Equal Than Others: BancInsure vs. FDIC - In George Orwell's "Animal Farm", the governing principle that "all animals are equal" was revised by the pigs, who had ascended into power, to "all animals...more

Employers, Don’t Sleep on Your Rights

There are ways of gaining a tactical advantage in Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) litigation, but sleeping on one’s rights in such a circumstance is not one of them. NPC International, Inc., a Pizza Hut franchisee, learned...more

CFPB Announces Intent to Commence Arbitration Rulemaking

On October 7, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced that it is considering two rulemaking proposals that would severely limit the use of pre-dispute arbitration clauses in consumer financial service...more

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