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Business Litigator, Mediator
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SingerLewak LLP v. Gantman Contains Excellent Discussion Of The “Public Policy Exception” That Sometimes Permits Judicial Review Of An Arbitrator’s Decision – But Not Here. It is well-established that arbitrators do not exceed their powers just because they assign an erroneous reason for their decision. Therefore, the vast majority of... Continue reading
Rule For Arbitration Awards Is Different From Rule For Judgments In North Beach Partners, LLC v. Sollner, A139893 (1/4 July 27, 2015) (Rivera, Ruvolo, Reardon) (unpublished), a hotly contested real estate dispute, the superior court granted a motion to amend a judgment and add additional judgment debtors as alter egos... Continue reading
“Exotic” Choice Of Law Clause Is The Key To This Case. Stained glass in Neiman Marcus store, San Francisco. Carol M. Highsmith, photographer. 2012. Library of Congress. Neiman Marcus drafted an ingenious choice of law clause that the First District, Division Four, describes as “exotic” – perhaps a euphemism for... Continue reading
Contract Must Be Construed As A Whole So As To Give Effect To Every Part, If Reasonably Practicable Rodriguez v. Oto, 212 Cal.App.4th 1020 (2013) held language unambiguously releasing “all persons” from liability extended to third parties, entitling a stranger to summary judgment that the stranger had been released, in... Continue reading
The Disqualification Outcome Hinges On Whether The Attorney-Settlement Officer Received Confidential Information Bird’s-eye view of the Great Wall of China. Jean E. Norwood, photographer. 1979. Library of Congress. Attorney Banuelos participated as a settlement officer on a “CRASH” panel mediating an employee-employer dispute in Los Angeles Superior Court. “CRASH” stands... Continue reading
The Waiver Of A Right To Assert PAGA Claim In Any Forum Is Unenforceable And The Claim Cannot Be Split. Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC is still binding precedent, and an employee cannot be required to waive a representative PAGA claim in any forum. But can an employee,... Continue reading
14-Month Period From Filing Of Original Complaint To Filing Of Motion To Compel Is Insufficient To Support Waiver, Absent Showing Of Prejudice Khalatian v. Prime Time Shuttle, Inc., Case No. B255945 (2/8 June 9, 2015) (Grimes, author; Bigelow concurring, Flier concurring and dissenting) (published) nicely bookends our penultimate post on... Continue reading
“Less-Than-Candid ‘Chronology of Pertinent Events Underlying Appeal’” Chafes Court. In Oregel v. PacPizza (1/2 June 1, 2015) (Richman, Kline, Stewart) (published), the Court of Appeal had no trouble affirming the superior court’s order denying Appellant PacPizza’s petition to compel arbitration. More than enough evidence of a high level of litigation... Continue reading
Arbitration of Unlawful Group Boycott Claim Under California Cartwright Act Was The Juicy Florida Choice Of Law Law Issue. HCF Insurance Agency v. Patriot Underwriters, Inc., Case No. B257715 (2/5 May 27, 2015) (unpublished) involved a dispute between plaintiff insurance broker, and defendant program administrator/underwriter, partially governed by an arbitration... Continue reading
1991 Amendment To Title VII Facilitates Waiver Of Statutory Remedies In Favor Of Arbitration “Before 1991, ‘Title VII had been interpreted to prohibit any waiver of its statutory remedies in favor of arbitration. Prudential Ins. Co. of Am. v. Lai, 42 F.3d 1299, 1304 (9th Cir. 1994). But Congress reversed... Continue reading
From Queen Padmé Amidala To Ruth Bader Ginsburg . . . Every now and then we get the irresistible urge to blog about something that has nothing whatsoever to do with mediation and arbitration. Today, the “off topic” item comes from Amy Howe’s Monday round up on SCOTUSblog, reporting Natalie... Continue reading
Arbitration Provision Clearly Applied To Litigation, But Not To Earlier Transactional Work. Nordman Cormany Hair & Compton, formerly in business for 75 years in Ventura County, appealed an order denying its petition to compel arbitration of a legal malpractice lawsuit. Aggeler v. Nordman Cormany Hair & Compton, B253566 (2/6 April... Continue reading
But Court Of Appeal Does Reject Arguments That Nonsignatories Lacked Standing And That They Waived Right To Compel Arbitration – Before Addressing “Crucial Issue Of Scope In Williams v. Digius, et al., D064183 (4/1 April 24, 2015) (McDonald, McConnell, Haller) (unpublished), the Court of Appeal agreed with appellants, who had... Continue reading
Court Shows No Sympathy For Circumstance Of Defendant/Appellant Whose Party Arbitrator Died. Here, the arbitration panel proceeded with arbitration after the death of defendant/appellant Mitchell’s party arbitrator, refusing to continue the hearing to permit Mitchell to select another party arbitrator. That sounds pretty harsh, but read on: “As troublesome as... Continue reading
Daily Journal Publishes My April 17, 2015 Article On The Perils Of Blogging Published by The Daily Journal on April 17, 2015, my article on the legal perils of blogging will interest those of you who blog, or who are considering blogging. With the permission of the Daily Journal, I... Continue reading
Scope Of Arbitration Provision Was Broad And Unconscionability Was Lacking. This case will be of interest to football fans, and maybe even to lawyers. Hanson v. Cable, A138208 (1st Dist. Div. 3 April 15, 2015) (Jenkins, McGuiness, Pollak) (unpublished). Plaintiff/appellant Randy Hanson sued The Oakland Raiders and its former head... Continue reading
And Application To Compel Arbitration Remains “Undetermined” As Long As Dissatisfied Party Is Pursuing Appellate Review. The Fourth District, Division 2 made short shrift of this case, issuing a peremptory writ of mandate directing the Superior Court of Riverside County to vacate its order denying petitioner Carmax’s motion to stay... Continue reading
Automobile Trade-In Goes Sideways. Above: Old car and truck outside the “Vehicles-You-Deserve” Used Car Dealership in Mesquite, Texas. Photographer: Carol M. Highsmith. 2014. Library of Congress. At first glance, this seems like a fairly common scenario. A daughter trades in her father’s used car for a new one, and payments... Continue reading
“Manifest Disregard Of The Law” Federal Standard For Vacating Award Worked To Employee’s Advantage Here. Our next case involves arbitration issues addressed in three forums: a Labor Management Committee, state courts, and federal district court. Plaintiff/Petitioner Wawock petitioned for a writ of mandate, seeking an order directing the superior court... Continue reading
Failure To Establish Existence Of Actual Agreements To Arbitrate With Any Class Members Dooms Effort To Compel Arbitration. How should one move to compel arbitration with members of a potential class who are parties to arbitration agreements giving them the opportunity to opt out of arbitration? Apparently, not the way... Continue reading
Article By Mediator/Arbitrator Paul Dubow Anticipates Arbitration Issues Arising From California AB 2617 And Proposes Solutions. Paul J. Dubow’s article, “ADR Update: Dealing with AB 2617”, appearing in California Litigation, volume 28, No. 1, 2015, anticipates FAA preemption issues arising from AB 2617, passed by the California Legislature in 2014,... Continue reading
Fourth District, Division Three Ruled Earlier In Citibank v. McGill That “Broughton-Cruz” Rule Fell Prey To Federal Arbitration Act Preemption. Fallen Prey. Circa 1934-39. Library of Congress. Under California’s “Broughton-Cruz” rule, arbitration provisions are unenforceable as against public policy if they require arbitration of Unfair Competition Law, False Advertising Law,... Continue reading
Easter Puck. Louis M. Glackens, artist. 1901. Library of Congress. Continue reading
Mediator Gallup Walloped For Failure To Exhaust Administrative Remedies. Family services mediator Emily Gallup complained to her supervisor and other court management about “insufficient time for mediation appointments, inadequate review of records and gathering of facts, failure to consider criminal histories, failure to advocate for the best interests of the... Continue reading
Deadlines: Lombard Knight v. Rainstorm Pictures, Inc., B253246 (2/1 March 25, 2015). In this case involving agreements to finance the production of motion pictures, Plaintiff sought to “confirm” a multi-million dollar arbitration award, while also asking to dismiss individuals, on the grounds that they had not been properly served, and... Continue reading