In American Management Services & Fedorak v. Merced, No. 4D15-1385 (Fla. 4th DCA March 2, 2016), the Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed the denial of a motion to compel arbitration. The appellate court found that the trial court erred by failing to set an expedited evidentiary hearing on substantial disputed issues regarding the making of the arbitration agreement.
An employee had sued her former employer, alleging negligent and intentional infliction of emotional distress, violation of the Florida Whistleblower Act, and violation of the Florida Civil Rights Act. The employer filed a motion to compel arbitration, alleging that the employee electronically signed an arbitration agreement upon applying for employment.
The employee opposed the motion, asserting in a sworn affidavit that she never executed the arbitration agreement. In response, the employer filed a sworn declaration that the employee had typed the date, her name, and full social security number in an online application. The trial court denied the motion, stating there were factual issues that needed to be resolved after additional discovery. The Fourth District found that it was error to deny the motion pending further discovery without setting an expedited hearing.
Donna Greenspan Solomon, Esq., handles business-related appeals, mediation, and arbitration. Donna also co-counsels and serves as freelance business litigator for those wishing to expand the bench strength of their practices. Donna is one of only two attorneys certified by The Florida Bar as both Appellate Specialist and Business Litigator. Donna is a Member of the AAA’s Roster of Arbitrators (Commercial Panel). She is a FINRA-Approved and Florida Supreme Court Qualified Arbitrator. She is also a Certified Circuit, Appellate, and Family Mediator. For more information, call Donna at (561) 910-0054, email Donna@SolomonAppeals.com, or visit http://www.solomonappeals.com.