Arbitration Agreement not Enforceable

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Arbitration Agreement not Enforceable

Category : Employment Law

An arbitration agreement which was part of the employee handbook and subject to the other provisions of the handbook was held to not be a separate and enforceable agreement.

In Johnson v. Vatterrot Education Centers, WD75472, (Mo. App. W.D. 10/8/13), the employer sought to compel arbitration after plaintiff filed a lawsuit claiming that the termination of her employment was the result of discrimination. The arbitration agreement was contained in the employee handbook. It was signed by both plaintiff and the employer’s HR director. However, the handbook stated that the handbook was not a binding contract and did not alter the employee’s at-will status. It stated that an employee’s status could only be modified through a document signed by the president of the employer.  Therefore, because the arbitration agreement was a part of and subject to the other provisions of the employee handbook, the court held that it was not a separate and enforceable agreement. See https://www.courts.mo.gov/file.jsp?id=66334.