April 7, 2022
On March 30, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Viking River Cruises Inc. v. Moriana, a highly anticipated case for California employers related to the scope of the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA). In their article for Law360, Senior Employment Counsel Corinne Spencer and Senior Associate Antwoin Wall analyzed the oral arguments which focused on the FAA’s ability to preclude California’s Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) actions based on an otherwise enforceable arbitration agreement between the parties.
Wall and Spencer explained that the question presented in the case is whether the FAA requires enforcement of a bilateral arbitration agreement providing that an employee cannot raise representative claims, including under California’s PAGA.
The authors noted that although the tone of the oral argument highlighted a hesitation to embrace Viking River’s assertion that PAGA claims are comparable to class actions without class action protections, and thus should not escape arbitration, the silence of the conservative justices may ultimately be more telling as to how the court will rule.
Read the full article here. (Subscription to Law360 required).