In this article, an Orange County employment attorney explains the procedures involved in selecting an arbitrator.
The Arbitration Association
This organization has the responsibility of selecting individuals to arbitrate between disputing parties. The procedures followed in making that selection are given in the guidelines used by the association, or they may be contained within the arbitration agreement. There are three ways in which an arbitrator may be chosen:
• The individuals or entities in dispute may agree to an arbitrator of their choosing, in which case the arbitration association confirms the appointment.
• Each of the individuals or entities in dispute, if no mutual selection has been made, may choose from a list of prospects provided by the arbitration association. They must, within a specified time period, narrow these down to those most acceptable, listing them from the most to the least preferred. The arbitration association will make the choice from the remaining candidates according to which one holds the highest standing.
• Failing the above, the arbitration association will assign an arbitrator to the case.
It is critical that the arbitrator chosen be completely impartial with no ties to either of the disputing parties or their attending counsel. Any connections with or preferences toward either party must be disclosed, along with any other information that could indicate bias of any kind. If the arbitrator should withhold any such information, the court could challenge and possibly reverse his or her decision and any sums awarded thereby.
Prior History and Experience
You and your Orange County employment lawyer must take steps to screen arbitral candidates for any present or past personal, financial or professional involvement with anyone concerned in the case that could raise questions. You should also request from the arbitration association information concerning the candidate’s previous history to determine his or her experience in arbitrating employment disputes and what resolutions were achieved. Further, you should establish whether or not he or she has arbitrated in cases involving the opposition in the past and how frequently the arbitrator has served in that capacity.
Your First and Most Important Step
If you are involved in an employment case, you will need experienced legal counsel. You can obtain it by calling Daily Aljian LLP, your Orange County employment attorney, at 949-861-2524 without delay.