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Friday, October 18, 2013

Brown v. Superior Court: Supreme Court Grants Review of Another Arbitration Matter

In Brown v. Superior Court (Morgan Tire & Auto, LLC) (6/4/13) --- Cal.App.4th --- (discussed here), the Court of Appeal reversed in part a trial court order compelling individual arbitration of wage claims, holding that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) does not preempt California law prohibiting waiver of an employee's right to bring a representative action under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA).

The California Supreme Court has granted review of that decision and deferred briefing pending its decision in Iskanian v. CLS Transportation of Los Angeles (Case No. S204032) (discussed here), which presents the following issues:
  1. Did AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion (2011) 563 U.S. __ impliedly overrule Gentry v. Superior Court (2007) 42 Cal.4th 443 with respect to contractual class action waivers in the context of non-waivable labor law rights? 
  2. Does the high court's decision permit arbitration agreements to override the statutory right to bring representative claims under the Labor Code Private Attorneys General Act of 2004 (Lab. Code, § 2698 et seq.)? 
  3. Did defendant waive its right to compel arbitration? 
Brown v. Superior Court is Case No. S211962, and the Supreme Court's web page for it is here.

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