News & Commentary

March 1, 2022

Tala Doumani

Tala Doumani is a student at Harvard Law School.

Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court granted certiorari to resolve a circuit court split regarding whether a showing of prejudice is a prerequisite to find waiver of an arbitration agreement in Morgan v. Sundance, Inc. While agreements to submit disputes to arbitration are abundant in this day and age, courts are split over the requirements for validly waiving a parties right to arbitrate. Some lower courts have held that the standard for arbitration waiver agreements mirrors other contracts. In such a case, validly waiving your right to arbitrate would only require the intentional relinquishment of a known right. The majority of lower courts, however, have set a higher standard for arbitration waivers. These courts have held that the relinquishment of the arbitration right must cause prejudice before constituting a waiver. Should the Supreme Court side with the majority view, the Court would be endorsing the view that arbitration agreements are above other contracts by making it harder to waive agreements to arbitrate.

The Court is set to hear arguments on March 21, 2022.

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