Articles Posted in Arbitration & Mediation

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This dispute arose from a contract signed by the parties in 2006, the Wireless Patent License Agreement, which provided for arbitration as the mechanism to resolve any claims arising under that Agreement. LG Electronics, Inc. sought a declaration in the Court of Chancery that InterDigital Communications, Inc., InterDigital Technology Corporation, and IPR Licensing Inc. that InterDigital had breached a nondisclosure agreement between the parties by disclosing confidential information during a pending arbitration proceeding. The Court of Chancery granted InterDigital's motion to dismiss, holding that all of LG's claims were properly before the arbitral tribunal, and deferred to the "first-filed proceeding" based on the factors established by the Delaware Supreme Court in "McWane Cast Iron Pipe Corp. v. McDowell-Wellman Engineering Co." After review, the Supreme Court agreed that the McWane doctrine applied in this case, and that it supported dismissing LG's claims. View "LG Electronics, Inc. v. InterDigital Communications, Inc." on Justia Law

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The issue this case presented to the Delaware Supreme Court centered on the circumstances under which an arbitration award could be vacated where it was argued that the arbitrator manifestly disregarded the law. The parties to a corporate acquisition agreed to arbitrate disputes about the acquired company’s balance sheet on the effective date of the transaction. They retained an arbitrator to decide whether a workers' compensation reserve had been calculated correctly. The arbitrator decided, without any analysis, that there would be no adjustment to the balance sheet. The Court of Chancery vacated the arbitrator's decision, finding that the arbitrator did not follow the relevant provision of the parties’ share purchase agreement. But the test for “manifest disregard for the law” was not whether the arbitrator misconstrued the contract (even if the contract language is clear and unambiguous). "To vacate an arbitration award based on 'manifest disregard of the law,' a court must find that the arbitrator consciously chose to ignore a legal principle, or contract term, that is so clear that it is not subject to reasonable debate." Because the record did not support such a finding, the arbitrator’s award was reinstated. View "SPX Corporation v. Garda USA, Inc., et al." on Justia Law

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The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was whether an arbitration determination should have been vacated because the arbitrator refused to consider certain evidence. The arbitrator concluded he lacked authority to decide whether a particular issue was arbitrable. Because the Court of Chancery inconsistently resolved arbitrability questions that came before it, the matter was appealed to the Supreme Court. Upon further review, the Supreme Court concluded that in this case, the trial court was correct in holding that neither party's claim provided a good enough reason to vacate the arbitration determination. View "Viacom International Inc. v. Winshall" on Justia Law