Articles

California Supreme Court’s latest slippery evasion of federal arbitration law

April 06, 2017 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

Sharon McGill sued Citibank under California’s consumer protection laws for alleged unfair competition and false advertising in offering a credit insurance plan she purchased to protect her Citibank credit card account. McGill signed a contract that contained an arbitration provision and twice was offered the opportunity to opt-out of the arb ...

Articles

PLF asks Supreme Court to review challenge to California's mining ban

February 03, 2017 | By JONATHAN WOOD

Nearly two centuries ago, the Supreme Court recognized that the “unavoidable consequence” of the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause is that States have “no power … to retard, impede, burden, or in any manner control” federal policies that are otherwise consistent with the Constitution. California, unfortunately, has ...

Articles

Federal supremacy protects miners' rights

July 21, 2016 | By PACIFIC LEGAL FOUNDATION

PLF and Western Mining Alliance have filed an amicus brief in the Ninth Circuit case Bohmker v. Oregon. In the brief, we argue that federal mining policy preempts Oregon’s ban on a federally-approved and encouraged mining practice. Part of having a federalist system of government is deciding which level of government gets final say when R ...

Articles

Can Californians arbitrate claims for public injunctive relief?

January 22, 2016 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

Sharon McGill sued Citibank under California’s consumer protection laws for alleged unfair competition and false advertising in offering a credit insurance plan she purchased to protect her Citibank credit card account.  McGill signed a contract that contained an arbitration provision and allowed her to opt-out if she chose not to accept tha ...

Articles

Game on! U.S. Supreme Court to review California anti-arbitration rule

October 01, 2015 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

Today, in the first order list of the 2015 Term, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in MHN Government Services, Inc. v. Zaborowski, in which the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals applied a severability rule created by the California Supreme Court in Armendariz v. Foundation Health Psychcare Services to invalidate an arbitration contract. Severabilit ...

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Supreme Court rejects New Jersey arbitration case

June 08, 2015 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

New Jersey courts, along with those of California and Massachusetts, continually exhibit hostility to the freedom of contract, when that freedom is expressed in a contract to arbitrate consumer or employment disputes. Today, the Supreme Court denied certiorari in U.S. Legal Services Group v. Atalese, a New Jersey Supreme Court decision requiring ar ...

Articles

Putting the “Supreme” in Supremacy Clause

June 03, 2015 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

In 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court decided in AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion that California’s Discover Bank rule, which essentially forbade class-action waivers in consumer arbitration contracts, was preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. Specifically, Concepcion concludes: “Because it ‘stands as an obstacle to the accomplishment an ...

Articles

How California courts are evading federal law

May 27, 2015 | By WENCONG FA

Today’s Daily Journal carries an op-ed by PLF attorneys Deborah La Fetra and Wen Fa on DIRECTV v. Imburgia, the latest in a long line of California court cases undermining arbitration and evading federal law. Here’s a taste: For nearly a century, the Federal Arbitration Act has explicitly instructed courts to respect the decision of &# ...

Articles

California versus the Supremacy Clause

October 24, 2014 | By DEBORAH LA FETRA

In Iskanian v. CLS Transportation Los Angeles, LLC, the California Supreme Court once again displayed its ongoing hostility to arbitration contracts.  As we noted when the decision came down in June, the court bowed to the inevitable in acknowledging the Supreme Court’s abrogation of an earlier ruling that invalidated class action waivers in ...