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LAW Arbitration in America

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LAW 699

Arbitration in America

Law School

Recommended for route(s):

[ Academia ] [ Litigation ] [ Regulatory & Policy ] Employment Law: Labor

Why it is relevant for ...

[ Academia ] [ Litigation ] [ Regulatory & Policy ] as a Related Elective for those interested in ADR : This history of ADR, with a particular focus on arbitration, will be useful for students expecting to litigate in the courtroom as well as those who know they are interested in using ADR methods . Arbitration is increasingly favored for commercial disputes as well as in government-mandated programs for labor disputes and in other specific contexts and industries. This course offers students of dispute resolution an opportunity to consider the difficulties as well as the benefits of an increasing use of ADR in lieu of judicial litigation.

General course Description:

This course covers the history and development of alternative dispute resolution in the U.S., with an emphasis on arbitration. It describes how the federal and state governments have gradually come to accept and now favor the private settlement of commercial disputes based on consent of parties. It examines the many different contexts and industries in which arbitration is conducted, including government-mandated programs for labor disputes, systems established by specific industries such as the diamond trade and professional sports associations, the construction industry, and commercial disputes in general; more controversial is the use of arbitration for consumer, class action and employment disputes. This historic reversal of power over adjudication from government to the private sector has alleviated the delays and uncertainties of judicial litigation, and has created a huge and growing legal field of attorneys, arbitrators, and service providers fashioning and administering systems ranging in complexity from the most formal mega dispute with full discovery to the resolution of mini disputes through mechanically applied algorithms. Allowing private parties to agree on the law and procedures that govern their disputes has led, moreover, to numerous clashes of interests, including evasion of public policies established by legislation. How to deal with alleged violations of public policy, errors of law, erroneous findings of fact, unfair procedures, unequal negotiating power, and arbitrator bias are among the continuing and complex difficulties currently faced by courts and legislatures. The US Supreme Court's recent attempts to deal with several aspects of these difficulties will be considered. We will also examine the less heralded but highly significant use of mediation as a relatively speedy and inexpensive method for private dispute resolution, and the recent development of hybrid systems and other innovations. Elements used in grading: Class participation, attendance, written assignments and final exam.

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