Bizarre Texas Tactic a Cautionary Tale for Employers

By John Alan Doran Plaintiffs’ attorneys in Texas have come up with a not-so-clever, but potentially effective way to circumvent mandatory arbitration agreements.  In Adcock v. Five Star Rentals/Sales, Inc., (Fourth Court of Appeals, Texas, April 18, 2019), Plaintiff’s attorney sent a pre-litigation letter to the employer asking whether the employer had an arbitration agreement […]

SCOTUS Restricts Class Arbitrations

By John Alan Doran In yet another pro-arbitration, employer-friendly decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this morning that an individual cannot pursue claims in arbitration on behalf of a class unless the arbitration clause involved clearly and unequivocally permits class treatment of claims. Lamps Plus v. Varela, 17-988 (April 24, 2019). Varela worked for Lamps […]

SCOTUS HITS BRAKES ON I/C TRUCKER ARB

By John Alan Doran Yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against a large national trucking company in its attempt to enforce an arbitration agreement against one of its independent contractor truck-drivers. New Prime Inc. v. Oliveira, No. 17-340 (U.S. January 15, 2019). The lawsuit alleged that New Prime contractors were actually employees, but were not paid minimum […]

State Law Bars Conditioning Employment on Agreement to Arbitrate

By Bill Wright Recently, the Kentucky Supreme Court considered whether the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”) preempts a state law.  The FAA prevents states from setting higher standards for entering into or enforcing arbitration agreements than for contracts generally.  The Kentucky law at issue read: [N]o employer shall require as a condition or precondition of employment […]

Employer Narrows “Collective” Actions Thru Arbitration Agreement.

By: Beth Ann Lennon Last term, in Epic the Supreme Court ruled the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) is not a “get out of arbitration free” card. Individual employees who sign an appropriate arbitration agreement can be compelled to arbitrate even their “concerted” claims. Now, according to the Sixth Circuit, that ruling also tells us […]

SCOTUS Upholds Class-Action Waivers

By Bryan Stillwagon May employees and employers agree that any disputes between them will be resolved only through one-on-one arbitration? Today, the Supreme Court responded, “YES.” In a 5-4 decision, the Court held in Epic Sys. Corp. v. Lewis, Ernst & Young LLP et al. v. Morris et al., and NLRB v. Murphy Oil USA, […]

Benchslap for Blacklisting Rule

By John Alan Doran Yesterday a federal court put a temporary hold on the Obama Administration’s so-called Blacklisting Rule. Associated Builders v. Rung. In a previous blog we described in detail the Administration’s Executive Order and proposed rules. The Rule created onerous reporting requirements, imposed punishment including debarment on alleged violators, and prohibited pre-dispute arbitration agreements for […]

California Bans Out-of-State Law

By Bill Wright California has passed a novel piece of employment law.  New section 925 of the California Labor Code prohibits employers from requiring employees to sign an agreement that (a) forces the employee to litigate or arbitrate outside California if the claims arise from events (e.g. living and working) inside California; and (b) specifies […]

Ninth Circuit Strikes Class Arb Waivers

By John Alan Doran The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals weighed in, today, on the propriety of class action arbitration waivers under the NLRA.  The Court held that such waivers violate Sections 7 and 8 of the NLRA in the context of a pending FLSA lawsuit. Ernst & Young requires new employees to sign an […]

The War on Employment Arbitration

By Andy Volin The Seventh Circuit just created a split in the Federal Courts of Appeals by ruling an employment arbitration provision that did not permit arbitration of collective claims was not enforceable because it violated the National Labor Relations Act.  Lewis v. Epic Systems Corp., No. 15-2997 (7th Cir. May 26, 2016). This is the first […]