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Franklin v. Cmty. Reg’l Med. Ctr. (9th Cir. 19-17570 5/21/21) Nonsignatory to Arbitration Agreement/Wage and Hour 

By May 21, 2021June 26th, 2021Arbitration, Fair Labor Standards Act

The panel affirmed the district court’s order granting defendant’s motion to compel arbitration of wage-and-hour claims brought by a nurse under the Fair Labor Standards Act and California law.

Plaintiff signed a Mediation and Arbitration Policy and Agreement with the staffing agency for which she worked. She also signed a Travel Nurse Assignment Contract with the staffing agency, establishing the terms of her assignment to work at defendant Community Regional Medical Center’s hospital. The Assignment Contract also included an arbitration provision.

The panel held that the defendant Hospital, a nonsignatory, could compel arbitration because plaintiff’s claims against the Hospital were intimately founded in and intertwined with her contracts with the staffing agency. Thus, under California law, plaintiff was equitably estopped from avoiding the arbitration provisions of her employment contracts.