June 20, 2018

Think Before Signing: The New Danger in Employers’ Arbitration Agreements

Category: Labor and Employment Law

Author: Matthew T. Hurm, Esq.

The Supreme Court just decided a case which could have a massive impact on workers across the country. In Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, the Supreme Court found that employees can waive their right to litigate their discrimination or wage theft cases in federal court by signing an arbitration agreement with their employer. In the past, the Court had held that federal protection from discrimination could not be limited by a contract such as an arbitration agreement, but this decision changes that. Now, by signing an employer’s arbitration agreement, you will no longer be able to bring any federal discrimination or overtime claim against your employer to court. Additionally, your employer can forbid you from joining any class or collective action lawsuit through such an arbitration agreement.

This is a devastating blow to workers. When an employer gives their employees an arbitration agreement to sign, they have all the negotiating power and can threaten their employees with termination if they fail to sign the agreement while the employees have little recourse. Now more than ever, employees should consider organizing a union at their workplace to help protect them from employers abusing their power to discriminate and/or steal your wages.

If you have any questions or your employer is requiring you to sign an arbitration agreement, you can contact the Hurm Law Firm, LLC for a free consultation.

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