Parties often favor arbitration over litigation due to its perceived economic efficiencies and finality.  In terms of finality, the Federal and California Arbitration Acts authorize courts to review arbitration awards in only narrow circumstances.  Most often, awards simply are not reviewable.  However, when arbitration awards are deemed subject to review, courts can be remarkably unpredictable in their approaches.  Peter Boutin and Alex Bukac of Keesal, Young & Logan’s San Francisco office recently authored an article that examines several court opinions dealing with arbitrators’ evidentiary decisions.  The article was published by the Daily Journal on April 1, 2016 and focuses principally on a recent federal case from New Jersey where the court vacated an arbitration award due to the arbitrators’ failure to consider material evidence.  Notwithstanding the result in the New Jersey case, however, other recent decisions confirm the continuing reality that courts will disturb an arbitration award in only the most extreme circumstances.

Linked here with permission of the Daily Journal is a reprint of the article.