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Theresa Kelly Discusses Third Circuit Ruling on Class-wide Arbitration with New Jersey Law Journal

August 1, 2014

Labor and Employment partner Theresa A. Kelly provided an analysis of the impact of the July 30 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit decision in Opalinski v. Robert Half International Inc. The ruling held that deciding whether arbitration should apply to a class is not a question of procedure but is "a substantive gateway dispute qualitatively separate from deciding an individual quarrel." Kelly told the NJLJ that the ruling's bottom line is that arbitration of class disputes is itself an issue of arbitrability to be decided by a court rather than an arbitrator. "The Third Circuit concludes in fairly strong terms that class-wide arbitration may not be appropriate in all cases and whether to proceed with a class-wide arbitration should be decided by a court when the parties clearly agreed to it," Kelly said.

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