9. What is arbitration? The process of arbitration involves the settling of a dispute by an impartial third party (other than a court) who renders a legally binding decision. The third party who renders the decision is called an arbitrator. Arbitration combines the advantages of third-party decision making—as provided by judges and juries in formal litigation—with the speed and flexibility of rules of procedure and evidence less rigid than those governing courtroom litigation. 10. What kinds of disputes may be subject to arbitration? The FAA requires that courts give deference to all voluntary arbitration agreements in cases governed by federal law. Virtually any dispute can be the subject of arbitration. A voluntary agreement to arbitrate a dispute normally will be enforced by the courts if the agreement does not compel an illegal act or contravene public policy. A CTIVITY AND R ESEARCH A SSIGNMENTS 1. Have students prepare a chart showing the relationships between the various courts having jurisdiction in your state. (There is a digest of each state’s courts in Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory , which might be placed on reserve in the library.) Assign a few jurisdiction hypotheticals. For example—Through which of these courts could a divorce decree be appealed? Which court(s) would have original jurisdiction in a truck accident involving out-of-state residents (does the dollar amount of injuries and damage make a difference)? Which court(s) would have jurisdiction to render a judgment in a case arising from food poisoning at a local cheeseburger stand that is part of a nationwide corporate chain? In which court(s) could you file a suit alleging discrimination, and if you lost, to which court could you appeal the decision? 2. Ask the class to research the reasons behind the earlier hostility of the courts towards arbitration pro- cedures. Were they concerned solely with parties being divested of their rights or did they see arbitration as a challenge to their own authority? 3. Have students investigate the dispute resolution services discussed in this chapter by going online and reading some the disputes submitted for resolution or the results in individual cases (on the ICANN Web site, for example). E XPLANATION OF S ELECTED F OOTNOTES IN THE T EXT Footnote 5: In International Shoe Co. v. State of Washington, 326 U.S. 310, 66 S.Ct. 154, 90 L.Ed. 95 (1945), the state of Washington sought unemployment contributions from the International Shoe Company based on commissions paid to its sales representatives who lived in the state. International Shoe claimed that its
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