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Ordered to arbitration in California.

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I just checked my local court website today and found an "Order to Arbitration" regarding my case. It cancels the 6-1-12 case management conference. It states "This case will be ordered to the Arbitration hearing list on JUL-30-2012 pursuant to CCP1141.11©. Further information will be sent by the Arbitration Administrator after JUL-30-2012." :shock:

Has anybody ever had this happen? I was warned by legal aid that because I had elected a jury trial, that the court would likely send my case to mandatory arbitration. They said it would mean more work for me, and also more work for the other side. Apparently the other side might dismiss if they don't want to go through the trouble.

The Order itself states how a party can file an objection, and in this eventuality, all counsel must appear for an objection hearing on June 1, 2012.

This is all new to me. I left a message with the court asking if this suspends discovery procedures. Now I need to look up CCP1141.11©. :confused:

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"© Each superior court may provide by local rule, when it is

determined to be in the best interests of justice, that all

nonexempt, limited civil cases shall be submitted to arbitration

under this chapter. This section does not apply to any action in

small claims court, or to any action maintained pursuant to Section

1781 of the Civil Code or Section 1161."

It simply authorizes the arbitration order.

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I'm already dealing with an OC, and then this court-ordered arbitration complicates the picture. Sometimes I think BK would be a better alternative, but I have to keep researching.

OTOH, this OC doesn't have an arbitration clause, and may not be crazy about arbitration either. I wonder if they'll object, or move to dismiss. It does mean more work for them, too.

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and it took a while for them to produce a stack of (unauthenticated) statements. When I propounded discovery, they produced the same statements, plus a copy of a cc agreement that's also available online. They said they were sending an application but what they enclosed was their lawyer's initial letter about filing a lawsuit.

I got a 3-week extension to serve my own responses (due 6-13-12), and I'm working on that.

The only thing I could glean from legal aid is that this means more work for both sides, and there are plaintiffs that have dismissed because of this.

If anyone has information on this process, I would appreciate it. I've read one site that says it's an informal procedure with no transcript, just the arbitrator's notes! :shock:

However, the losing party may move for a trial de novo before the arbitrator's award becomes a judgment. I don't know how it makes this economical, because a trial de novo means that the case is dealt with twice. Oh well, they're trying to unclog their dockets.

It's significant that there's not much information about court-ordered arbitration. It could mean that the cases get dismissed and nobody discusses it anymore. But who knows?

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We're here to share information and help each other out. Someone sent me a PM asking for the name of the OC, the date of last payment and first default or something like that. Now what was that all about? :confused:

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I would also work on electronic discovery requests.

or you could just go for SJ.

Court ordered arb is a coin toss and should be taken seriously, use the courts process against them by making cross complaint. since you have a jury trial in the making go for damages.

for all intensive purposes the court is using this as a way to knock both of you on the head about the jury trial aspect.

so use the arbitor to get you a dismissal with prej. and if it goes badly then use the system to purge the arbitrator.

You need to research the arbitrators rulings and see if you object to that arbitrator or not.

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Hi Seadragon,

Thanks for your comments. I'm not sure what electronic discovery means, could you give me a heads up? :)

The Order says the case will be ordered to the arbitration hearing list on July 30, 2012. The court will send more information after that. I'm wondering if, during the interim, the parties can continue slugging it out. I've never thought about a cross-complaint, although I've thought about MSJ. However, I wonder if the court would accept these things now that we're supposed to go to arbitration.

I'm researching, of course. At the same time I'm hoping the other side dismisses the case. Apparently plaintiffs don't like the arbitration angle (it's more work for them) and so they tend to file dismissals.

Also, any party that doesn't like the arbitrator's decision may move for a trial de novo. It's like litigating twice. And my impression is that what transpired during the arbitration is ignored. If you can point me to a source that talks about court-ordered arbitration, I'd appreciate it. This is such a terra incognita type of situation, nobody knows what it's about.


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the ESI is something to think about for these electronic files they have but will not give you.

Something like this:

1. Provide all electronic communications between <plaintiff> and<plaintiff's assignor> regarding the alleged account <number> to include all meta data, keywords, all file access logs, all header information, in it's native format or a format readable on a windows/apple based computer to include a program to display same files. Said production is to be included on a dvd-r media device or a flash drive device of suitable size.

2. Provide the actual alleged account data file for the to include metadata and log files of data access. production is to be in a format readable on a windows/apple based computer with any applicable software to read the data. Said production is to be included on dvd-r media or a flash drive device of suitable size.

3. Provide all electronic logs of file access for the alleged documents propounded previously from the alleged account creation to the date of the answer to this request. Said production is to be included on dvd-r media or a flash drive device of suitable size.

4. Produce all electronic files of the policy manuals for Collection activities to include supervisor policies, collector policies, and any electronic mail responsive to the subject of collection policies enforcement and/or employee written warnings with redaction of the employees personally identifying information. If the employee is a witness for the plaintiff the name is to be disclosed. Said production is to be included on dvd-r media or a flash drive device of suitable size.

Something like that.

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Thanks for the heads-up, Seadragon. I never even knew what ESI was. Actually, we're almost done with discovery (I still have to turn mine in and am still working on it) so maybe it's not applicable. At any rate, this is an OC rather than a JDB.

Also, I have been looking over the timelines for this OC on my local court's website. About once a year some defendant demands a jury trial (just like me) and the court immediately assigns the case to arbitration. So far the end result is a dismissal, for some reason or other. There's one case that dragged on because the defendant kept asking for an extension. They must have exceeded the time limit because the court finally dismissed the case, one year after it was assigned to arbitration. The plaintiff's lawyer seemed to be missing in action. It's crazy.

Wouldn't it be great if the OC simply dismissed the case? If it's work for me, it's also more work for them.

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