Fourth Circuit: Class Arbitrability is Gateway Issue for Courts, Not Arbitrators

In Dell Webb Communities, Inc. v. Carlson, No. 15-1385 (4th Cir. Mar. 28, 2016) (click here for a copy of the decision), the Fourth Circuit held that whether an arbitration agreement permits class proceedings is a gateway issue for courts to resolve, instead of a procedural issue for arbitrators to determine.  The Fourth Circuit concluded that the availability of class arbitration must be a decision for courts to make because of the fundamental differences between bilateral and class arbitration.

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