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 →

Latest Appealing Arbitration Decisions Posts
american football

Lessons From Recently Vacated Arbitration Awards

By Liz Kramer | September 6 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions While I was busy blogging out listicles and "think pieces" last month, my stack of unread arbitration cases grew exponentially.  August was apparently a very busy month for publishing arbitration opinions.  Maybe most surprisingly, the federal appellate courts vacated three arbitration awards in recent weeks.  So...


Illustration with superhero flying to fight with crime and protect the city drawn in comics style

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...


2016-05-03 MarchApril2016 004

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...



Unvacating Arbitration Awards: Quarterbacks and Car Accidents

By Liz Kramer | April 26 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions The Second Circuit reminded us yesterday that judicial review of arbitration awards is “among the most deferential in the law.”  And when district courts are not sufficiently deferential, their decisions are likely to be overturned.  That happened recently in Tom Brady’s “deflate-gate” arbitration, and in...


A lot of money in piles of coins

Fifth Circuit Finds Federal Jurisdiction Over $10,000 Arbitration Award

By Liz Kramer | April 14 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions The Fifth Circuit recently addressed a hard question: what should the court consider when determining the amount in controversy for purposes of federal jurisdiction over an arbitration award?  The court decided to rely on the amount originally sought by the claimant in the demand for arbitration.  Pershing, LLC v....


Map of West Virginia

SCOTUS Vacates Second Arbitration Case This Term

By Liz Kramer | March 1 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Validity of Arbitration Agreement, Year In Review Showing it will soldier on without Justice Scalia, the Supreme Court granted cert, vacated, and remanded an arbitration decision from West Virginia yesterday.  Because this is the exact same treatment the Court gave a case from Hawaii's highest court in January (and the same treatment I predicted, ahem), it...


Snowstorm 063

January Arbitration Update: Effective Vindication, Class Arbitration, and FAA Preemption

By Liz Kramer | January 29 2016

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Arbitration Rules/Procedures, Class Arbitration, Waiver of Right to Arbitrate Lots of interesting arbitration law has been made already in 2016, so here is a roundup from the first four weeks of the year. As a teaser, courts have breathed life into the effective vindication doctrine, found arbitrators cannot determine the availability of class actions, and found state laws not preempted. ...


winter trees on snow white background

3 Year-End Arbitration Lessons From Appellate Courts

By Liz Kramer | December 21 2015

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Litigation vs. Arbitration, Waiver of Right to Arbitrate Before I can sum up 2015 in arbitration (next post!), I need to report on some new cases coming out of the federal and state appellate courts in recent weeks.  Two are just good reminders of basic arbitration law, but the third addresses an interesting question of double recovery. Our first "reminder" case comes...



Want To Vacate Arbitration Award For Bias? Hawaii Is Here To Help.

By Liz Kramer | December 6 2015

Appealing Arbitration Decisions The Supreme Court of Hawaii ruled recently that if a neutral arbitrator fails to meet disclosure requirements, it constitutes "evident partiality" as a matter of law, and requires the vacatur of the arbitrator's award.  Furthermore, Hawaii interpreted its disclosure requirements broadly, and in this case found an...


USA, Alaska, recreational vehicle driving on road, side view

Final Means Final: No Reconsideration in Arbitration

By Liz Kramer | November 20 2015

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Arbitration Rules/Procedures Recent decisions from the 3d and 11th Circuits drive home this point: an arbitration award is final and should not be revisited. In Robinson v. Littlefield, 2015 WL 5520017 (3d Cir. Sept. 17, 2015), the parties arbitrated their dispute over the quality of a new RV.  The arbitrator ruled for the RV buyers, awarding...