Friday, March 06, 2009

On the connection between the Uniform Arbitration Act and the Federal Arbitration Act

Today, in A & G Coal v. Integrity Coal Sales, Chief Judge Jones of the W.D. Va. held that the parties' dispute was subject to arbitration.

His analysis began with this point: "Since the purchase orders at issue involve interstate commerce,1 the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), 9 U.S.C.A. § 1-16 (West 1999 & Supp. 2008), applies."

Is that right? My answer would be, yes, but . . . . I made this more complicated in Penn Virginia v. CNX case, arguing that the state arbitration act applied unless and until it was preempted by the FAA, and that it was not where state law was more pro-arbitration even than the FAA (to overstate the point, slightly).

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