There were no cases published on Thursday worth writing (or reading) about, so I skipped Friday’s edition; the courts made up for it on Friday and Saturday. Because of the volume of opinions and the goal of keeping to about a page, today’s “Highlights” will essentially be an index to those filings. If something interests you, please go directly to the case.
Effect of Arbitration on Related Non-arbitration action
Hodges v. Walinga USA, Inc., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168234 (D. Kan. September 21, 2023)(Melgren, J.) considers whether a final arbitration award forecloses, under the “one action” doctrine, other litigation to determine the liability of a non-arbitrating party.
Class Action Fairness Act
Cuevas v. Little Caesar Enterprises, Inc., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169508 (N.D. Cal. September 22, 2023)(Chhabria, J.), addresses the interplay between arbitration provisions in defendant’s employment contracts and the calculation of the number of plaintiffs and the size of damages for determining whether there is federal jurisdiction under CAFA. The court holds that, where a class purports to include employees who signed arbitration agreements, those employees and their damages must be considered in determining the federal threshold.
Timing and Severance under EFFA
Turner v. Tesla, Inc., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169581 (N.D. Cal. August 11, 2023)(Orrick, J.), addresses two important issues under the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment Act. First, the court holds that the Plaintiff’s claims accrued after March 3, 2022, and, therefore, are not subject to arbitration. Secondly, the court opines that EFFA’s bar against enforcement of predispute arbitration clauses applies to claims that, while not alleging sexual assault or harassment, “are intertwined with [plaintiff’s] sexual harassment claims.” Therefore, he holds that those claims are, also, to be litigated in court.
Continued Employment as Acceptance of Arbitration Provisions
Galanova v. Morgan Stanley Services Group, Inc., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169606 (S.D.N.Y. September 22, 2023)(Koeltl, J.), holds that, under New York law, an employee, by continuing employment after being advised of his or her employer’s adoption of a mandatory arbitration procedure, agrees to the terms of that process.
Prejudgment Interest; Timing of Application to Confirm Award
While the facts involve interpretation of a stipulation , First Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting W.L.L. v. Kellogg Brown & Root International, Inc. 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 169658 (E.D. Va. September 22, 2023)(Trenga, J.), lays out the discretion which the court retains to award post-award, pre-judgment interest. Judge Trenga also addresses whether the time limitations set out in Chapters 1 and 2 of the FAA are mandatory or permissive.
Subject Matter Jurisdiction
Combs v. Same Day Delivery Inc., 2023 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 167954 (S.D.N.Y. September 20, 2023)(Vyskocil, J.), also addresses jurisdiction. The Court holds that, even if the parties’ action has been dismissed in favor of arbitration, the court may still hear an application to vacate the award under the same case number; the party challenging the award need not file a new action.
David A. Reif, FCIArb