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Considering asking for court review of arbitration decisions

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

Think every arbitration decision is final? Think again. Arbi­tration agreements can allow a court to review the decision, as long as both parties agreed.

Recent case: Nafta Traders terminated Margaret Quinn, its vice president of operations, claiming worsening business conditions. She sued, alleging sex discrimination.

Nafta demanded arbitration, since the employee handbook called for it. The arbitration agreement included limited judicial review.

Quinn won in arbitration and de­­manded her money—almost $200,000. That’s when Nafta appealed to a state court, asking for a review.

The Texas Supreme Court said the company had that right, but also limited Nafta’s appeal to the records and evidence already presented at arbitration. (Nafta Traders v. Quinn, No. 08-0613, Supreme Court of Texas, 2011)

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