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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Augusta v. Keehn: Court Finds Plaintiff Who Filed Civil Action Waived Right to Compel Arbitration

I like to keep track of decisions dealing with the waiver of one's right to compel arbitration. See posts here and here.

This one came out a while ago, but I've never published my post on it. In Augusta v. Keehn & Associates (3/4/11) 193 Cal.App.4th 331, the Court of Appeal affirmed the holding of the trial court (San Diego Superior Court, Judge Jay M. Bloom) that the plaintiff waived his right to arbitrate a legal malpractice claim where he knew of the arbitration clause when he filed his civil complaint but did not petition to compel arbitration for six and a half months and plaintiff undertook formal discovery in the civil action. The Court held that substantial evidence supported the trial court's finding that defendant’s supplemental discovery responses were sufficiently prejudicial to warrant the denial of arbitration since these answers revealed new information, and plaintiff had refused to reciprocate in discovery.

The opinion is available here.

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