Archive: 18 April 2016

1
Untangling the Webb of Arbitrability: The Fourth Circuit Holds That Courts Determine the Availability of Class-Wide Arbitration
2
Buy One, Get One Free: Appellate Court Strikes Deal to Permit Defendant’s Second Attempt at Removing Class Action Beyond Initial Thirty-Day Removal Window

Untangling the Webb of Arbitrability: The Fourth Circuit Holds That Courts Determine the Availability of Class-Wide Arbitration

By Andrew C. Glass, Robert W. Sparkes III, Loly G. Tor and Eric W. Lee

Is the availability of class-wide arbitration a “gateway” question for courts, or are arbitrators charged with such a decision once a matter is compelled to them? In Dell Webb Communities, Inc. v. Carlson, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals followed the lead of the Third and Sixth Circuits and held that courts — not arbitrators — should ordinarily make the decision. The Fourth Circuit’s decision should be welcome news to corporate defendants seeking to enforce individual (“bilateral”) arbitration agreements while preserving the ability to obtain meaningful appellate review of a determination allowing class-wide arbitration.

To read the full alert, click here.

Buy One, Get One Free: Appellate Court Strikes Deal to Permit Defendant’s Second Attempt at Removing Class Action Beyond Initial Thirty-Day Removal Window

By Ryan M. Tosi

Addressing an issue of first impression, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Graiser v. Visionworks of America, Inc., recently upheld a defendant’s second attempt at removing a class action to federal court under the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”), long after the thirty-day removal deadline applicable to traditional diversity jurisdiction expired. The Grasier decision confirms that the defendant does not have a duty to perform any significant investigation of facts relevant to federal jurisdiction independent of the information received from the plaintiff, and that the thirty-day removal period set forth in 28 U.S.C. § 1446(b) applies only after the plaintiff’s pleadings or documents provide the defendant with a clear statement of the damages sought or with sufficient facts from which damages can be readily calculated. As such, a defendant may remove a case under CAFA even if the initial thirty-day removal window has closed where that defendant later receives a document from the plaintiff from which it could be first ascertained that the case was removable under CAFA, thereby providing the defendant with “a new window for removability.”

To read the full alert, click here.

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