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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

California Supreme Court Grants Review in Iskanian

In Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC (6/4/12) --- Cal.App.4th --- (discussed here), the Court of Appeal issued a broad-ranging decision which held, among other points: 
Concepcion invalidated the holding in Gentry v. Superior Court (2007) 42 Cal.4th 443, that class waivers in arbitration agreements should not be enforced if “class arbitration would be a significantly more effective way of vindicating the rights of affected employees than individual arbitration.” 
The NLRB incorrectly decided D.R. Horton (discussed here), and nothing in the NLRA or the Norris-La Guardia Act evidences an intent to override the FAA's policies in favor of construing arbitration agreements according to their terms.  
Contrary to the holding in Brown v. Ralphs Grocery Co. (2011) 197 Cal.App.4th 489 (discussed here), Concepcion applies to a plaintiff's representative claims under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA).  
Contrary to the holding in Reyes v. Macy’s Inc. (2011) 202 Cal.App.4th 1119, (discussed here), the plaintiff could pursue individual PAGA claims in arbitration.  
The California Supreme Court today voted unanimously to grant the plaintiff's petition for review in Iskanian.  The Court's docket page is here.  

As of this moment, the Court has not related Iskanian to Sanchez v. Valencia Holding Co., LLC (2011) 201 Cal.App.4th 74, review granted March 21, 2012, (Case No. S199119) (discussed here) in which the Court of Appeal invalidated a class action waiver on unconscionability grounds in a consumer action.  The Supreme Court has stated the issues presented in Sanchez as follows: 
Does the Federal Arbitration Act (9 U.S.C. section 2), as interpreted in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion (2011) 563 U. S. __, 131 S.Ct. 1740, preempt state law rules invalidating mandatory arbitration provisions in a consumer contract as procedurally and substantively unconscionable?

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