There was a huge employment news day this week. You may say it was Epic. The Supreme Court issued its decision on Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis allowing for employers to hold employees to binding individual arbitration agreements even in class action situations.
What does this mean to the small employer?
In short, this ruling favors large employers and disadvantages the employees that work for them. Generally, we at Scholz Nonprofit Law find that arbitration clauses rarely make sense for most of the small nonprofit organizations we advise. They can be very expensive to implement and bad for morale—these days they have a particularly unflattering tie to the #metoo movement because of the arbitration clauses that kept cases out of court and hidden from the public.
We often find that a better fit is mediation. See more on Mediation from the American Bar Association. It is faster and less expensive than resolving a dispute through arbitration or the courts system.
If you find that you must keep arbitration clauses, we would be happy to work with you to devise a framework that is best for you and your employees.
We appreciate the opportunity to advise our clients on not only “What is the law?” but “What is just?” Let us know if you have questions.