Mayers v. Volt Management Corp (2012) 203 Cal.App.4th 1194, held that an arbitration agreement was unconscionable. There, the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against his former employer alleging. For the details of CACI negligent misrepresentation hire a lawyer.
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several claims under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”). The defendant filed a motion to compel arbitration based on plaintiff’s agreement to submit employment-related claims to final and binding arbitration, as evidenced by his signed employment application, employment agreement, and acknowledgment of receipt of the employee handbook. The trial court denied the motion. The defendant appealed, arguing the trial court erred because the arbitration provisions were enforceable and did not contain any unconscionable elements. The defendant argued that, in any event, the trial court should have severed any offending provisions and ordered arbitration. The appellate court disagreed and affirmed the ruling.
The court held that the arbitration provisions contained in the employment application, employment agreement, and employee handbook each required that plaintiff submit employment-related claims to arbitration pursuant to the “applicable rules of the American Arbitration Association in the state” where plaintiff was employed or was last employed by the defendant. Plaintiff was not provided with a copy of the controlling AAA rules or advised as to how he could find or review them. The provisions also failed to identify which set of rules promulgated by the AAA would apply. The Court further stated that the “arbitrator shall be entitled to award reasonable attorney’s fees and costs to the prevailing party.” This would have exposed the employee to greater liability to defendant for attorneys’ fees than he would have been had he pursued his FEHA claims in court. For these and other reasons, the arbitration clause was ruled unconscionable and not enforced.
In January 2012, the National Relations Labor Board (“NLRB”) faced the question of whether an employer violates the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA”) when it requires employees covered by the NLRA, as a condition of their employment, to sign an agreement that precludes them from filing joint, class, or collective claims addressing their wages, hours, or other working conditions against the employer in any forum, whether arbitral or judicial. The NLRB found that such a condition was illegal and found no conflict with the FAA and its policies. Many found this to show disagreement with the ruling in Concepcion.
One of the songs is called “No One is Alone.” I believe some of the words of that song describe what we are all about, why CAALA is so successful and why we will continue to be great.
Things will come out right now. We can make it so.
Someone is on your side. No one is alone.
I’m proud that CAALA’s leaders and our members are there for each other. I’m definitely going to keep helping young attorneys and I hope everyone else does too. They are our future.
It’s been a great year; thanks for let-ting me lead this amazing organization. And keep looking forward.