Brief Fact Summary. Plaintiff and Defendant, acting according to their contract, sought to resolve a conflict by using arbitration. During the process of selecting an arbitrator, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) deviated from the contract.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. Arbitration is a contractual agreement to settle disputes without going to court. For an arbitration to be binding, it must be done in compliance with the contract. It is the duty of participants to object in a timely fashion.
Issue. Should the arbitration be set aside?
Was the selection process valid?
Held. No, on both counts.
The selection process was not valid because it seriously deviated from the selection process set out in the contract. The contract is what controls, because arbitration is a creature of contract.
It was Plaintiff’s duty to object to the selection process in a timely manner, not after the arbitration had been completed.
Discussion. Arbitration is a process when the parties contractually agree to resolve disputes by appearing before an arbitrator, instead of going to court. Thus, the process and policies used in the arbitration are determined by the con