In this unpublished opinion, the First District affirmed the confirmation of an arbitration award against a law firm. The law firm had agreed to allow its client to select an arbitrator to resolve the parties’ fee dispute and specifically agreed that the client could select one of his other lawyers involved in the underlying case.
After the client selected one of those lawyers to be the arbitrator and the arbitrator ruled against the firm, the firm claimed that the arbitrator was biased. The court held that the firm could not challenge the award based on bias because it knew of the arbitrator’s relationship with the client when it consented to him being an arbitrator.
The court also rejected the law firm’s argument that the arbitrator went beyond arbitrating the fee dispute and considered allegations of negligence.
(This is for informational purposes and is not legal advice.)