One Year Anniversary: Felahy Employment Lawyers Secure $5,000,000.00 Class Action Settlement
September 17, 2018
The California Supreme Court has ruled that an employee does not waive his rights to a Labor Commissioner hearing if he was coerced or misled into signing an arbitration agreement.
August 29, 2019
An agreement to arbitrate wage disputes can be enforceable so long as it provides an accessible and affordable process for resolving those disputes; even if a litigation-like arbitration procedure could be an acceptable process, an employee may not be coerced or misled into accepting this trade. (See, OTO, LLC v. Kho, 2019 S.O.S. 2266.)
The California Supreme Court originally granted review in OTOv. Kho to decide whether an arbitral scheme resembling civil litigation can constitute a sufficiently accessible and affordable process. However, because the facts in OTO v. Kho involve an unusually high degree of procedural unconscionability, a definitive resolution of that specific question is unnecessary. Even if a litigation-like arbitration procedure may be an acceptable substitute for the Berman (Labor Commissioner complaint) process in other circumstances, an employee may not be coerced or misled into accepting this trade. Considering the oppressive circumstances present in OTO v. KHO, the Supreme Court concluded the agreement was unconscionable, rendering it unenforceable.