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 Validity of Arbitration Agreement Posts

It’s A Wrap: 2011 in Arbitration Law

By Liz Kramer | December 30 2011

Scope of Arbitration Agreement, Validity of Arbitration Agreement, Year In Review As we pile up the cardboard boxes that held holiday gifts for the recycling truck and select our new year's resolutions for 2012, here are a few reflections on the last twelve months in arbitration law.  I would summarize it as another year where the U.S. Supreme Court was playing whack-a-mole, trying to tamp...

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Severability Squared: Can Invalid Provisions Within an Arbitration Agreement Be Severed?

By Liz Kramer | December 6 2011

Validity of Arbitration Agreement Do you remember the moment when you first encountered the concept of arbitrating arbitrability?  Just the phrase is mind-bending!  It took me a while to wrap my head around the idea that parties could separately agree to arbitrate the question of whether they really had to arbitrate.   Well, here's a similar...

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Twin Decisions From Florida Supreme Court Throw One-Two Punch at Nursing-Home Arbitration Agreements

By Liz Kramer | November 30 2011

Validity of Arbitration Agreement The Supreme Court of Florida has moxie.  It issued two new decisions the day before Thanksgiving which go out of their way to sidestep and distinguish the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Rent-A-Center, West v. Jackson, 130 S. Ct. 2772 (2010), in order to find that nursing home residents may not be compelled to...

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Second Circuit Finds Courts Have Power To Enjoin Arbitration In Limited Circumstances

By Liz Kramer | November 17 2011

Appealing Arbitration Decisions, Litigation vs. Arbitration, Validity of Arbitration Agreement The Second Circuit just held that a federal court has the power to enjoin an ongoing arbitration.  In re Am. Express Fin. Advisors Sec. Litig., ___ F.3d ___, 2011 WL 5222784  (2nd Cir. 2011).  While many litigants would no doubt like a federal court to enjoin their arbitrations -- especially when arbitrators refuse...

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You Don’t Have To Arbitrate Your Dispute With The Moving Company

By Liz Kramer | October 26 2011

Validity of Arbitration Agreement Just in time to participate in Arbitration Nation's (unplanned) series on legislative nullification of arbitration agreements,  the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last week that the Carmack Amendment nullifies pre-dispute arbitration agreements in interstate shipment contracts.  Smallwood v. Allied Van Lines,...

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“I’m Good Enough, I’m Smart Enough, And Dog-gone It” I Don’t Like Mandatory Arbitration

By Liz Kramer | October 18 2011

Litigation vs. Arbitration, Uncategorized, Validity of Arbitration Agreement Minnesota Senator Al Franken, among others, responded to the Supreme Court’s Concepcion decision  by introducing a bill called the Arbitration Fairness Act of 2011 (S.987, also in the House as H.R. 1873) last May, which would legislatively nullify arbitration provisions in various types of agreements.  The Senate...

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Precluding Arbitration in Legislation: Supreme Court Preview

By Liz Kramer | October 7 2011

Litigation vs. Arbitration, Validity of Arbitration Agreement Since the last post dealt with legislative overrides of arbitration agreements, this one will expand on that theme with a preview of an upcoming Supreme Court case.  In CompuCredit Corp. v. Greenwood, to be heard on October 11, the Supreme Court will decide whether Congress intended to prohibit arbitration of...

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Circuit Split On Whether Federal Lemon Law Claims Are Arbitable

By Liz Kramer | October 3 2011

Validity of Arbitration Agreement The Federal Trade Commission has long construed the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, a.k.a the “federal lemon law,” as barring binding arbitration provisions that consumers are asked to sign upon purchasing a product.  In fact, the FTC issued a rule that prohibits courts from enforcing binding arbitration clauses in...

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Is A Specified Arbitral Provider or Rule Set An Essential Term Of The Arbitration Agreement?

By Liz Kramer | September 23 2011

Arbitration Rules/Procedures, Validity of Arbitration Agreement By Liz Kramer and Patrick Burns (http://www.valuesolveadr.org/patrick.html ), Guest Blogger If an arbitration agreement calls for the dispute to be administered by an ADR provider that will not or cannot accept the case, or calls for the application of non-existent rules, it may not be enforceable.  That issue...

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Another State Law Bites the Concepcion Dust

By Liz Kramer | September 9 2011

Class Arbitration, Scope of Arbitration Agreement, Validity of Arbitration Agreement In April, the Supreme Court struck down a common law rule in California that declared most consumer arbitration agreements void if they prohibit classwide arbitration of claims, holding that it was preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act.  AT&T Mobility, LLC v. Concepcion, 131S. Ct. 1740 ( 2011).  In the last...

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