“Court Confirms Arbitration Decision Concluding That Discrimination Claims Were Time-Barred”

Brendan Gooley of Carlton Fields has this article in JD Supra, discussing the Michigan federal court’s adoption of a magistrate judge’s recommendation in Anagonye v. Mass Mutual Insurance Co., in which a financial advisor, having received a notice of a right to sue within 90 days by the EEOC, failed to commence arbitration within that period. The court stayed the action based on the existence of an arbitration agreement between the advisor and her former employer, and the arbitration panel subsequently determined that the demand was time-barred since it was not filed within 90 days of the EEOC’s notice.

The magistrate judge recommended confirmation of the arbitration award, explaining that “the FAA does not provide for judicial review of an arbitrator’s legal conclusions,” and the district court adopted the recommendation.

The legal issue of whether an EEOC’s requirement that suit be brought within 90 days serves as a time constraint on the commencement of arbitration may be interesting and debatable. However, the takeaway from Anagonye is that, legally correct or not, an arbitrator’s determination of that issue will be upheld by a court.

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