|Jottings By An Employer's Lawyer|
Thursday, December 16, 2004
Federal Court Has Authority to Enforce Forum Selection Clause Under the FAA
A party aggrieved by the alleged failure, neglect, or refusal of another to arbitrate under a written agreement for arbitration may petition any United States district court . . . for an order directing that such arbitration proceed in the manner provided for in such agreement. .. . The court shall hear the parties, and upon being satisfied that the making of the agreement for arbitration or the failure to comply therewith is not in issue, the court shall make an order directing the parties to proceed to arbitration in accordance with the terms of the agreement. The hearing and proceedings, under such agreement, shall be within the district in which the petition for an order directing such arbitration is filed. (emphasis in original opinion)In addition to the language of the statute, the Court could look to a similar decision by the 2nd Court in Bear, Stearns & Co. v. Bennett, 938 F.2d 31 (2d Cir. 1991). In that case it was a Florida litigant who was forced to go to New York, the forum contained in the arbitration agreement.
Even in arbitration it appears, location is key, or at least something worth fighting about.