Supreme Court

EPI Report Finds that More Than Half of Nonunion Workers Are Subject to Mandatory Arbitration Agreements

Melissa Greenberg

Melissa Greenberg is a student at Harvard Law School.

This post is part of OnLabor’s continuing analysis of National Labor Relations Board v. Murphy Oil USA.

In the lead up to the Supreme Court’s oral arguments on October 2, 2017 in the consolidated cases of Murphy Oil USAEpic Systems, and Ernst and Young, the Economic Policy Institute published a paper examining the prevalence of arbitration agreements among America’s workers.  The report is available in full here.  The report examines the rise of these agreements following the Supreme Court’s 1991 decision in Gilmer v. Interstate/Johnson Lane Corp., which held that the Federal Arbitration Act applied to employment agreements.  The report calculates that more than 60 million workers in nonunion workplaces have mandatory arbitration agreements.  Approximately 30 percent of employers with these types of agreements also have class action waiver provisions.  These statistics highlight the high stakes for workers in the outcome of these cases before the Court.

Scotusblog reports that Paul Clement, who is currently at Kirkland Ellis and previously served as solicitor general, will argue the case for the employers in the consolidated cases.  He will split his time with the Solicitor General’s office.  Counsel for the parties representing the employees will split their argument time with the National Labor Relations Board.

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