Habush Habush and Rottier

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Jacob Lewis v Epic Systems Corporation: Appellate Court Decision

This just in:
Lewis, J v. Epic Systems Corporation, 7th Circuit Decision

 Epic's no-collective-arbitration agreement is illegal.
Epic Systems, a health care software company, required certain groups of employees to agree to bring any wage-and-hour claims against the company only through individual arbitration. The agreement did not permit collective arbitration or collective action in any other forum. We conclude that this agreement violates the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), 29 U.S.C. §§ 151, et seq., and is also un-enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), 9 U.S.C. §§ 1, et seq. We therefore affirm the district court’s denial of Epic’s motion to compel arbitration. (emphasis mine)

What this means: Epic cannot stop its employees from availing themselves of the protections afforded by the National Labor Relations Act, including but (I assume) not limited to:

Section 7 of the NLRA provides that “[e]mployees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representatives of their own choosing, and to engage in other concerted activ-ities for the purpose of collective bargaining or other mutual aid or protection.”

Congratulations to Mr Lewis and his expert legal team.