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Vague Arbitration Clause

Discussion in 'Alternative Dispute Resolution' started by Sarah147, Oct 8, 2021.

  1. Sarah147

    Sarah147 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    I am looking into filing a breach of contract suit against a business in South Carolina. There is an arbitration agreement, but it is very open ended.
    "The parties agree that any claim or dispute between them or against any agent...be resolved by binding Arbitration. Any award of the Arbitrator(s) may be entered as a judgement in any Court of Competent Jurisdiction."
    Without any lists arbitrator I am unsure how to start the process or if I can simply move on to small claims court.
     
  2. Zigner

    Zigner Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for sharing.
     
  3. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Nothing vague about that. It's how arbitration works. If you want to expand on the procedures, go to:

    AAA Arbitration | ADR.org
     
  4. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    "Vague" and "open ended" are not the same thing.

    That's neither vague nor open-ended. Why do you think it is either or both of those things?

    Also, if you thought it was vague and/or open-ended, why did you sign the contract? Did you discuss your concerns with the other party and seek to make the provision less vague and/or open-ended?

    Your quote from the contract contained ellipses between the words "agent" and "be." What's missing? It may or may not be important. If I ignore the ellipses, and if I assume that nowhere else does it say what arbitration agency must be used, then you have choices, including, but not limited to, the following:

    1. Sue in regular civil court (small claims or otherwise). The other party might just accept that and allow the suit to go forward. Or, the other party might file a motion to compel arbitration.

    2. Send correspondence to the other party saying that you intend to take legal action. Point out that there's no indication as to what arbitration service must be used and propose using whatever service you want to use.

    3. Initiate arbitration with a service of your choosing and see if the other party objects.

    As indicated, there may be other options. In the abstract, I would favor options 1 or 2 over option 3.
     

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