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Sunday, November 24, 2013

West Virginia Arbitration Cases

Liz Kramer rightly says "A few months ago, you would have reasonably thought that West Virginia was one of the most anti-arbitration states in the country.  There was not an unconscionability argument that the state didn’t seem to buy with respect to arbitration clauses."  However, she explains, recent cases show the state's high court more receptive to enforcing arbitration clauses. 

West Virginia has some similarities to Alabama and Montana, other states that have had anti-arbitration bents at various times, insofar as all 3 states have a cultural populism and strong plaintiffs' bar that can combine against outsiders, particular businesses from outside the state.  I wrote about that in The Alabama Story: Arbitration shows law’s connection to politics, culture, DISP. RESOL. MAG. 24 (Summer 2001), reprinted as Arbitration: A License to Steal, 12 WORLD ARB. & MED. REP. 316 (Dec. 2001).

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