Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Shackleford v. Iberiabank

United States District Court, E.D. Arkansas, Western Division

January 9, 2018

KELLY SHACKLEFORD and KAREN MILLS, PLAINTIFFS
v.
IBERIABANK, ET AL., DEFENDANTS

          ORDER

          BILLY ROY WILSON, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.

         Pending is Defendants' Motion to Dismiss and Compel Arbitration (Doc. No. 38). Plaintiffs have responded and Defendants have replied.[1] For the reasons set out below, the Motion is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Plaintiffs filed a qui tam action under the False Claims Act against Defendants on July 8, 2015. Plaintiff Kelly Shackleford, who was employed by Defendants, also asserted claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Arkansas Minimum Wage Act, for wrongful termination, and for violations of COBRA.[2]

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Counts I-III

         In a December 28, 2017 letter, I asked, “Assume I find that the arbitration agreement is enforceable against Ms. Shackleford. Why would requiring Ms. Shackleford to proceed with arbitration affect Ms. Mills's ability to proceed in this case?”[3] In a joint response, the parties informed me that Counts I-III of the complaint had been settled. Since Plaintiff Karen Mills was named only in these counts, she was no longer involved in the case.[4] Accordingly, based on this correspondence, Counts I-III are DISMISSED with prejudice based on the terms of the settlement agreement and Ms. Karen Mills is DISMISSED.

         B. Counts IV-VIII

         Counts IV-VIII involve only Plaintiff Kelly Shackleford and all are based on her employment with Defendants. However, on August 31, 2010, Plaintiff Shackleford signed an Arbitration Agreement which, among other things, set out that she “underst[ood] that by signing this Arbitration Agreement, the parties waive their right to trial by court or jury.”[5] The Arbitration Agreement covers the claims alleged in Counts IV-VIII of the Complaint.

         Plaintiff Shackleford asserts that the Arbitration Agreement “is a stand-alone agreement that is not valid or enforceable because (1) it lacks mutuality of obligations, and (2) it is not supported by adequate consideration.”[6] However, both parties agreed to arbitrate certain claims and agreed to exclude certain claims from arbitration (assuming without deciding that mutuality of obligation is even required under the Federal Arbitration Act). Additionally, Plaintiff's acceptance of the arbitration agreement terms “supplied consideration for [her] employment.”[7]These same arguments have been rejected in cases involving similar arbitration agreements between employer and employees under the Federal Arbitration Act[8] (I am not a warm friend of the FAA, but it has been approved by the courts).

         CONCLUSION

         Based on the findings of fact and conclusions of law above, Defendant's Motion to Dismiss and Compel Arbitration (Doc. No. 38) is GRANTED IN PART and DENIED IN PART. The parties must proceed with arbitration, as set out in the Agreement.

         The Clerk of the Court is directed to ADMINISTRATIVELY TERMINATE this case, without prejudice to the right of the parties to reopen the case for good cause. However, this case will not be reopened unless an application to reopen is filed by one of the parties within 30 days of the final disposition of the arbitration proceeding. If no motion is filed, this Order will be considered a dismissal with prejudice, without further order of the Court.

         As set out above, Counts I-III are DISMISSED with prejudice based on the terms of the settlement agreement and Ms. Karen Mills is DISMISSED. This Court specifically retains ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.