Aleksanian et al v. Uber Technologies Inc. et al

Firm: Jenner & Block

Issue Area: Forced Arbitration & Coercive Contracts

Case summary

Jenner & Block represents Uber in a class action lawsuit by Uber drivers alleging that the company illegally deducted wages. Jenner & Block argued that the employees should not be allowed to sue Uber because they signed a forced arbitration agreement.


Excerpt from the firm's work product

The firm argued, "Plaintiffs entered into arbitration agreements yet seek to avoid arbitration. Plaintiffs claim that the FAA does not apply because Uber’s Agreement is a 'contract[] of employment of seamen, railroad employees, or any other class of workers engaged in foreign or interstate commerce,' and thus exempt from the FAA. 9 U.S.C. § 1. Plaintiffs 'bear[] the burden of proving that the claims at issue are unsuitable for arbitration.' Green Tree Fin. Corp. Ala. v. Randolph, 531 U.S. 79, 91 (2000). Plaintiffs cannot meet that burden for three independent reasons. First, Uber’s Agreement is not a 'contract[] of employment' under Section 1 of the FAA. Second, even if the Agreement is a 'contract[] of employment,' drivers who use Uber’s platform are not in a 'class of workers engaged in foreign or interstate commerce.' Third, even if the FAA does not apply, New York law would require enforcement of the Agreement."

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