What is a Demand for Arbitration?

The phrase “demand for arbitration” has been in the news recently because of a wave of claims against Twitter. Former Twitter employees allege that the company unfairly laid them off while they were on parental or medical leave and did not fulfill severance pay-related promises.

But why are these former employees pursuing a demand for arbitration instead of a lawsuit? It comes down to agreements made between the parties. If these employees cannot participate in individual or class action lawsuits against Twitter because of employment contracts or other agreements, they may still have the option to use arbitration to settle their claims.


What is Arbitration?

Arbitration is another legal pathway to dispute resolution. It is a formal request between the involved parties to have the matter decided by an arbitrator or panel of arbitrators rather than a judge or jury. Arbitrators are neutral third parties appointed by the parties or the organization involved in the arbitration.

Going through the arbitration process means that the proceedings and results can stay confidential, rather than the public nature of jury trials. Parties to the arbitration also avoid the potential of appeals down the line, making it a popular option for various disputes.


Demand for Arbitration is the First Step

A Demand for Arbitration sets the process into motion. It is a formal written request that outlines:

  • The parties involved in the dispute
  • The nature of the dispute
  • What relief is being requested (usually monetary)

Once the Demand for Arbitration has been served, the arbitration process begins. Usually, the method of selecting an arbitrator is detailed in the agreement at the center of the dispute, but if not, the parties will have to decide how to appoint the arbitrator.

Once the arbitrator has been selected, the parties have an initial hearing and then the discovery process starts. After the discovery portion of the arbitration is complete, the parties will come together for a hearing where they present their sides of the case. Finally, once the arbitrator has heard both sides, they will decide on the arbitration resolution.


What’s Ahead for Twitter Employment Lawsuits:

Because of the sudden and ongoing layoffs at Twitter, there will likely be additional lawsuits and demands for arbitration. While much remains to be seen about how the courts will handle these cases, terminated employees scored a win when a judge recently required Twitter to inform all recently laid-off employees about a pending lawsuit.

Because of the dynamic nature of Twitter’s approach to layoffs and employment, many more employees could be forced to take legal action to get the compensation they believe is owed to them. The company faces many allegations, including wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, and more.

If you have questions about an employment dispute or situation, please reach out to The McGonigle Law Team. We have decades of experience handling employment law cases and advocating for clients who have been wrongfully terminated or discriminated against.


The information contained herein is for general purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

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