Supreme Court of the United States Federal Arbitration Act

The United States Supreme Court is the highest court of the United States and is charged with interpreting federal law, including the United States Constitution. The Court's docket is largely discretionary... more +
The United States Supreme Court is the highest court of the United States and is charged with interpreting federal law, including the United States Constitution. The Court's docket is largely discretionary with only a limited number of cases granted review each term.  The Court is comprised of one chief justice and eight associate justices, who are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate to hold lifetime positions. less -
News & Analysis as of

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

Arbitration Clauses Under Attack – Do They Harm Consumers?

Arbitration clauses are a common feature in a large part of my business litigation practice. They are generally enforceable under both federal and state statutes (e.g., the Federal Arbitration Act and the Tennessee Uniform...more

Fenwick Employment Brief

Legislative Update - Governor Brown recently signed into state law the following employment law bills (among others): SB 358—Referred to as the California Fair Pay Act, this law is directed at closing the pay...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

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

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Takes Aim at Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Clauses

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last week announced its intent to launch a rulemaking process that would prohibit companies from using arbitration clauses that waive class action lawsuits. The CFPB's proposal...more

McCarran-Ferguson Lands a Jab on the FAA

As we reported in this space late last year, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, 131 S.Ct. 1740, 1745 (2011), tilted the scales toward federal power in the field of arbitration, preempting...more

Struggle At The Supreme Court Over Arbitration Clauses

The U.S. Supreme Court returned to familiar territory last week in DirecTV Inc. v. Imburgia (argued Oct. 6, 2015): the enforceability of an arbitration clause in a consumer contract containing a class action waiver. But...more

U.S. Supreme Court’s October 2015 Term Promises Slew of Significant Labor and Employment Cases

Each year, the U.S. Supreme Court begins its term on the first Monday in October. Although known as the “October Term,” the term in fact continues, alternating between two-week “sittings” and “recesses,” until late June or...more

Governor Brown Vetoes Blanket Ban on Arbitration Agreements, But Signals Potential Support of More Tailored Legislation

Governor Brown got it right when he vetoed Assembly Bill 465, which would have restricted the enforcement of arbitration agreements requiring the arbitration of claims brought against employers for violations under the...more

Supreme Court Agrees to Review California Rule Invalidating Contractor Arbitration Agreements

On October 1, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal of a company whose mandatory arbitration agreements with its contractors were deemed invalid by California state courts. Once again, the Court will determine...more

Justices Take On Another California Rule – When an Arbitration Agreement Is Too Flawed to Enforce

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to review whether the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) preempts a California state court rule on unconscionable provisions that is purportedly applied more stringently to arbitration agreements...more

Tennessee Supreme Court Holds That State Unconscionability Law Does Not Implicate Concepcion And Is Not Preempted By FAA

The Supreme Court of Tennessee reversed the lower courts’ rulings that a non-mutual arbitration provision in an installment contract on the sale of a manufactured home was unconscionable and unenforceable. In doing so,...more

Arbitration Puzzler: Nevada’s Anti-Waiver Rule Preempted; California’s Anti-Waiver Rule Not Preempted

Two opinions came out recently in disputes over the arbitrability of putative class actions alleging that employees were not paid for overtime (and other labor violations). In one, the Nevada Supreme Court acknowledged that...more

Supreme Court Update: Maryland V. Kulbicki (14-848) And Order List

… und willkommen zurück! Oktober Term 2015 kicks off today with argument in OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs (13-1067), a case which explores the contours of the commercial-activity exception to the Foreign Sovereign...more

SCOTUS Selects Second Arbitration Case For 2015 Term

2015 was a dry spell in arbitration decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court, but 2016 promises to be much more interesting. In addition to the California case being heard next week, SCOTUS just granted certiorari over another...more

9th Circuit Rejects Representative Action Waivers for PAGA Claims

If you read one thing... - With 9th Circuit ruling, California federal courts no longer a potential channel for employers to enforce representative action waivers for PAGA claims...more

Labor & Employment E-Note - September 2015

The National Labor Relations Board’s (the Board) Democratic majority handed the organized labor movement one of its biggest legal victories in recent years. The decision radically redefines the concept of “joint employment”...more

Blacklisting for Past Labor Violations -- Executive Order 13673

Officially known as “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces,” Executive Order 13673 now consists of proposed guidance from the Department of Labor (DOL) and proposed regulations from the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council (FAR). It...more

California Moves Toward Ban On Mandatory Arbitration of Labor Claims

On August 31, the California Legislature passed AB 465, aiming to “ensure that a contract to waive any of the rights, penalties, remedies, forums, or procedures under the Labor Code”—such as an arbitration agreement—is “a...more

United States Supreme Court Considering A California Appellate Court Opinion Invalidating A Class Action Arbitration Waiver

In a Special Focus article Rollie Goss previews another arbitration case coming before the United States Supreme Court involving the issue of whether a class arbitration waiver is unconscionable, and the impact of such a...more

California Legislature Targets Employment Arbitration Agreements

It is no secret that California is no friend to arbitration agreements. As the United States Supreme Court noted in its 2011 opinion in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, “California’s courts have been more likely to hold...more

Man Bites Dog: California Supreme Court unanimously rejects unconscionability challenge to consumer arbitration provision

The California Supreme Court has a reputation for hostility to arbitration, especially in the consumers and employment context. Much of the arbitration docket of the United States Supreme Court over the past 30 years has...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Arbitration Clause, but Unconscionability Remains a Defense to Arbitration

The California Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Sanchez v. Valencia Holding Company, LLC, on August 3, 2015, reversing a finding by the Court of Appeal that an arbitration provision was unconscionable...more

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