Archive for May 11th, 2010

The Supreme Court recently issued a decision addressing the issue of class arbitration.  In Stolt-Nielson S.A. v.  Animalfeeds International Corp., No. 08-1198 (April 27, 2010), an antitrust class action involving allegations of illegal price-fixing by international shipping companies, the Court held that an arbitration panel’s decision to force class arbitration was invalid because the arbitration agreement was silent about whether arbitration could proceed on a class basis.   

Beyond its impact in cases involving class arbitration and the interpretation of arbitration clauses in domestic disputes, the decision partially closes the door on arbitration as a possible global forum for litigating class actions.  The Second Circuit Court of Appeals had upheld the arbitration panel’s decision to compel class arbitration and certify a class of all purchasers worldwide of the defendants’ shipping services.  The Supreme Court’s decision leaves open the possibility of global class arbitration based on an arbitration agreement that expressly permits class arbitration, but class arbitration cannot be compelled simply because the agreement is silent on the issue.

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Strafford Publications is scheduling an encore presentation of the riveting CLE teleconference:

Rule 23(f) Class Certification Appeals

Strategies for Pursuing or Opposing Appellate Review in the Absence of Clear Standards

This program was first presented in January 2009, and apparently folks liked it enough to justify a reprise.  Check back here over the next few weeks for more details on the agenda and panelists…

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