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Heritage Law Group Oct. 25, 2015

So you’ve landed a yourarbitration agreement. dream job. You have worked your entire life to get to this point. You meet with your future employer, only to find that they want you to sign an arbitration agreement. You don’t want to risk losing your dream job, so you gladly sign the agreement. Was that the right choice?

Arbitration agreements are designed to protect businesses from employee lawsuits. By signing this agreement, you strip yourself the right to sue for anything such as,

  • Wrongful termination

  • Breach of contract

  • Discrimination

  • Sexual harassment, and more

You may not think that any of these things would happen to you, but in the off chance that they do, you won’t be able to do anything about it in court. If you don’t sign, then you may not be able to live out your dream.

We are going to break down the advantages and disadvantages of signing an arbitration agreement with your employer to help you choose the best decision.

Advantages of an Arbitration Agreement

There are many advantages that come to both you and the employer if you were to sign an arbitration agreement. Let’s use a few examples to better illustrate them.

Let’s say you were with a company for over 20 years. You loved to work there. You have made lifelong friends that have become a part of your family. One day, your boss makes a derogatory comment about you. You think that they must be having a bad day. The weeks go on and on and they are still making these remarks. You decide to say something, and the boss lashes out with more harmful words and fires you.

Because you have signed an arbitration agreement, you can’t bring this to court, but you may not want to. You may be embarrassed by the things they said to you. With arbitration, you are in a more casual, and intimate setting where you can resolve the issue in a less public atmosphere.

Arbitration will also allow you to resolve this issue much faster than if you ever brought it to court. When court cases can take several years from start to finish, arbitration takes months.

Disadvantages of an Arbitration Agreement

Many people argue that they do not have a preference of where their cases are heard, as long as they are heard somewhere. There are many differences between these two types of settlements.

When you take your claim to a court, you will be heard by a third party judge and a jury of complete strangers. This gives you the opportunity to present your case to a completely unbiased group of people.  

With arbitration, your case will be heard by an arbitrator. This individual, typically a retired judge, is often paid by one side to listen to the evidence and witnesses. This can lead to biased listeners, that won’t hear your case properly.

In addition to this, with arbitration, you will not have the opportunity to appeal the arbitrator’s decision. What is decided is the final decision. So, if you believe that the ruling was unfair, you will not have a second chance to state your argument.

We hope this has helped you better understand whether or not you should sign an arbitration agreement with your employer. Unfortunately, we cannot make the decision for you, but we hope that this information makes the decision process easier.