Arbitration is meant to be an alternate to litigation. Yet arbitration is itself the subject of much litigation over who must arbitrate, what must be arbitrated, whether and how the arbitration should proceed, and the deference courts must show to arbitration awards. This blog is intended to be a resource for litigators, in-house counsel, arbitrators and anyone else who wants to stay on top of the many thorny issues that arise under the Federal Arbitration Act. Our Bloggers →

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Class Rep Can Opt Out of Arbitration for All (And Other Recent State Court Anomalies)

By Liz Kramer | July 15 2016

Class Arbitration, Litigation vs. Arbitration, Validity of Arbitration Agreement, Waiver of Right to Arbitrate Continuing last week’s theme of “States Gone Wild,” here are three more oddball summer decisions from state supreme courts. All of them find interesting paths around federal case law (IMHO). Georgia Says Class Complaint Is Deemed Arbitration Opt Out For All Class Members In Bickerstaff v. SunTrust Bank,...

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Three Blockbuster Summer Arbitration Decisions

By Liz Kramer | July 8 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Scope of Arbitration Agreement, Validity of Arbitration Agreement While regular people count down the days to summer blockbusters that come in the form of high-paid actors fighting aliens or robots, I prefer my summer blockbusters in the form of arbitration opinions that have been months in the making (maybe finally released because the clerks are about to turn over?). Today, I...

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New Stats From The AAA

By Liz Kramer | June 29 2016

Year In Review The American Arbitration Association (AAA) has not released statistics for years (other than to the CFPB). But recently, arbitration geeks got a summer solstice gift of (limited) new information. The piece is only three pages, short enough to read during a commercial break, but here are some key numbers to...

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Don’t Find Yourself SOL: Know Whether the Statute of Limitations Applies to Your Arbitration

By Liz Kramer | June 22 2016

ArbitrationNation Roadmaps (primers) Statutes of limitations provide peace of mind for many attorneys and clients, knowing previous conduct cannot lead to liability after a prescribed time period. But, do statutes of limitations apply to arbitration proceedings? The answer is: not necessarily.  Because of that, advocates and parties need to know when...

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New Jersey Becomes Third Recent State Court to Refuse To Enforce Delegation Clause

By Liz Kramer | June 15 2016

Validity of Arbitration Agreement In a decision that appears intentionally controversial, the Supreme Court of New Jersey yesterday refused to enforce the delegation clause in a for-profit college's enrollment agreement in a 5-1 opinion.  Morgan v. Sanford Brown Institute, 2016 WL 3248016 (N.J. June 14, 2016).  Although the delegation clause had...

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

By Liz Kramer | June 7 2016

Class Arbitration 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.  After all, the 7th Circuit gets affirmed more than other circuit courts by SCOTUS, earning it a...

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9th Circuit Narrows Grounds For Vacating Labor Arbitration Awards

By Liz Kramer | May 26 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions Finding that some of its previous pronouncements were leading district court judges astray, the Ninth Circuit clarified its precedent regarding the scope of review of labor arbitration awards. "We conclude that it is time for us to retire the use of 'plausibility' as a term to describe the courts' role in reviewing...

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Fishermen Avoid Being Caught In Arbitration’s Net

By Liz Kramer | May 22 2016

Scope of Arbitration Agreement, Validity of Arbitration Agreement What are the defining characteristics of an arbitration agreement? The dissent in a new 9th Circuit case took on that vexing issue, while the majority sidestepped it altogether while refusing to compel arbitration. In Boardman v. Pacific Seafood Group, __ F.3d __, 2016 WL 1743350 (9th Cir. May 3, 2016), a group of...

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Eight [Months] Is Enough — To Waive Your Arbitration Rights

By Liz Kramer | May 11 2016

Waiver of Right to Arbitrate Today's post is brought to you by the number 8.  The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a new opinion yesterday finding that a defendant who litigated in court for 8 months waived its right to arbitrate (aka, ARBITR8) plaintiff's employment claims.  [That could be my vanity plate!!] Messina v. North Central...

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Hold Onto Your Hats: CFPB Proposed Rules Will Lead to Lots of Class Action Litigation

By Liz Kramer | May 5 2016

Class Arbitration, Year In Review Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed the rules that it previewed last fall, following up on its Arbitration Study. Those rules would essentially ban class action waivers from consumer financial agreements, as well as requiring arbitral institutions to provide data on consumer financial disputes to...

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