Hutcheson v. Eskaton Fountainwood Lodge

Committing a senile elderly person to a residential care facility is a “health care” decision, so only a person holding a health care power of attorney may make that decision for the elder; as a result, a facility’s arbitration agreement signed by an agent with only a regular power of attorney was not binding.  California…

Heimlich v. Shivji

Entry of an arbitration award does not deprive the arbitrator of jurisdiction to enter a later supplemental award of costs under CCP 998, nor does CCP 1281.4’s general rule that each party bear a pro rata share of arbitration costs bar such an award.  CCP 998 was amended in 1997 to allow arbitrators to award…

Kindred Nursing Centers, LP v. Clark

The Federal Arbitration Act preempts Kentucky’s rule invalidating an arbitration clause entered into by an attorney-in-fact unless the power of attorney specifically authorizes the attorney-in-fact to enter into an arbitration agreement.  The FAA preempts Kentucky’s rule invalidating an arbitration clause entered into by an attorney-in-fact unless the power of attorney specifically authorizes the attorney-in-fact to…

Garcia v. Pexco, LLC

Arbitration clause in employee’s contract with staffing agency could be enforced by the employer to whom the staffing agency assigned him, because plaintiff’s claims arose out of his employment contract and were intimately intertwined with it, thus estopping him from asserting the employer was not a party to the agreement.  This decision affirms an order…

McGill v. Citibank, N.A.

A waiver of the right to seek injunctive relief in court to prevent violations of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act, Unfair Competition Law, or False Advertising Law is unenforceable under California law, and the Federal Arbitration Act does not preempt California law in that respect.  This decision reaffirms Broughton v. Cigna Healthplan of California (1999)…

Emerald Aero LLC v. Kaplan

An arbitration clause that states each party gives up the right to discovery and appeal does not waive the right to a judicial review of the arbitration award on the limited grounds available under the Federal Arbitration Act or the California Arbitration Act, nor does it waive the right to appeal from a judgment confirming…

Farrar v. Direct Commerce, Inc.

An arbitration clause in a high executive’s employment contract was enforceable after severance of its single unconscionable provision exempting from arbitration any claim for breach by the employee of the employer’s confidentiality agreement.  A high level sales executive sought to avoid arbitration of her wrongful termination claim, arguing that the arbitration provision was unconscionable.  The…

ECC Capital Corp. v. Manatt, Phelps & Phillips

A trial court may not vacate an arbitration award for the arbitrator’s failure to disclose a possible ground for disqualification unless it is shown that the arbitrator actually knew (not merely should have known) of the undisclosed ground for disqualification. The trial court correctly denied ECC’s petition to vacate an arbitration award and instead confirmed the…

Betancourt v. Prudential Overall Supply

A pre-dispute arbitration clause cannot be enforced to require arbitration of a claim based on the Private Attorney General Act, since the claim is brought on behalf of the state which is not party to the arbitration agreement.  The trial court correctly denied an employer’s motion to compel arbitration of an employee’s suit which alleged…

Emerald Aero LLC v. Kaplan

A $30 million arbitration award is vacated as the arbitrator exceeded his powers by awarding punitive damages that the claimant first requested the day before the arbitration hearing.  This decision reverses a judgment confirming an arbitration award of $30 million, most of it punitive damages, in a securities fraud case.  The arbitrator exceeds his powers…

Vasserman v. Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital

District court properly denied defendant employer’s motion to compel arbitration of plaintiff workers’ wage and hour claims, since collective bargaining agreement’s arbitration clause covered only contract-related claims, not statutory claims.  A collective bargaining agreement can provide for arbitration of workers’ statutory claims as well as workers’ claims arising under the agreement.  However, to do so,…

Poublon v. C. H. Robinson Co.

It was an abuse of discretion to deny defendant employer’s motion to compel arbitration due to the low level of procedural unconscionability and the absence of substantive unconscionability.  The district court abused its discretion in denying defendant employer’s motion to compel arbitration.  Though the bonus plan document that contained the arbitration agreement was an adhesion…