Advertisement

April 20, 2014

North Carolina Court Of Appeals Reverses Order Denying Motion to Compel Arbitration

Generally speaking, the North Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure do not require trial courts to make findings of fact when disposing of motions.  However, in Cornelius v. Lipscomb, Judge Martha A. Geer, joined by Chief Judge John C. Martin and Judge Donna Stroud, explained that orders addressing motions to compel arbitration present an exception to this rule.

In reviewing an order denying a motion to compel arbitration, Judge Geer explained that "[t]his court has repeatedly held that 'an order denying a motion to compel arbitration must include findings of fact as to whether the parties had a valid agreement to arbitrate and, if so, whether the specific dispute falls within the substantive scope of that agreement.'"  A failure to include those findings will result, as it did in this case, in the Court of Appeals reversing the trial court's order and remanding the case for entry of an appropriate order.

Judge Geer's opinion also reminded trial courts that if they find "that the parties did enter into an arbitration agreement, the court must also address whether the Federal Arbitration Act ("FAA") or the North Carolina Revised Uniform Arbitration Act applies as to the agreement."

While the Court of Appeals' opinion is directed to the trial courts, as most practicing attorneys know, these types of orders are generally drafted by counsel for the parties and submitted to the trial court for the judge's signature. A proposed order on a motion to compel arbitration that does not contain the necessary findings of fact and conclusions of law is a sure way to spend a great deal of your time and your client's money on an appeal that is certain to result in the lower court's opinion being reversed.

Copyright © 2014 Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, PLLC. All Rights Reserved.

About the Author

Robert T Numbers II, Womble Carlyle Law Firm, Business Litigation Attorney
Attorney

Bob is an attorney in Womble Carlyle’s Business Litigation Practice Group. Since joining the firm in 2005, Bob has focused his practice on litigation matters at the trial and appellate levels in state and federal courts. He approaches each matter he handles in a way that aligns with the client’s business objectives, and in the most efficient and cost effective manner possible.

919-755-8184

Boost: AJAX core statistics

Legal Disclaimer

You are responsible for reading, understanding and agreeing to the National Law Review's (NLR’s) and the National Law Forum LLC's  Terms of Use and Privacy Policy before using the National Law Review website. The National Law Review is a free to use, no-log in database of legal and business articles. The content and links on www.NatLawReview.com are intended for general information purposes only. Any legal analysis, legislative updates or other content and links should not be construed as legal or professional advice or a substitute for such advice. No attorney-client or confidential relationship is formed by the transmission of information between you and the National Law Review website or any of the law firms, attorneys or other professionals or organizations who include content on the National Law Review website. If you require legal or professional advice, kindly contact an attorney or other suitable professional advisor.  

Some states have laws and ethical rules regarding solicitation and advertisement practices by attorneys and/or other professionals. The National Law Review is not a law firm nor is www.NatLawReview.com  intended to be  a referral service for attorneys and/or other professionals. The NLR does not wish, nor does it intend, to solicit the business of anyone or to refer anyone to an attorney or other professional.  NLR does not answer legal questions nor will we refer you to an attorney or other professional if you request such information from us. 

Under certain state laws the following statements may be required on this website and we have included them in order to be in full compliance with these rules. The choice of a lawyer or other professional is an important decision and should not be based solely upon advertisements. Attorney Advertising Notice: Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Statement in compliance with Texas Rules of Professional Conduct. Unless otherwise noted, attorneys are not certified by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, nor can NLR attest to the accuracy of any notation of Legal Specialization or other Professional Credentials.

The National Law Review - National Law Forum LLC 4700 Gilbert Ave. Suite 47 #230 Western Springs, IL 60558  Telephone  (708) 357-3317 If you would ike to contact us via email please click here.