Trusted By The World’s
Leading Corporations

Photo of the legal professionals at Klein & Wilson

Sarkisian lawsuit dismissed due to arbitration clause

On Behalf of | Oct 26, 2017 | Contract Disputes

The USC Trojans may still be licking their wounds after losing 49-14 to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, but they still will look to secure another Pac-12 Championship in December. It resembles the increased faith of USC football program, which is arguably a far cry from where the program was just two years ago.

That was when the university abruptly fired then head Steve Sarkisian in the midst of a tough season. Sarkisian sued USC in December 2015, claiming that he was fired instead of being given an opportunity to seek treatment for alcoholism. Sarkisian was ostensibly removed for public displays of drunkenness during school events, and he sought the remainder of his contract, which had $12.6 million left on it, as well as unspecified damages. 

Naturally, USC denied Sarkisian’s claims and claimed that his lawsuit was riddled with “half-truths” and “outright falsehoods” according to the Los Angeles Times.

What appeared to be poised as a long legal battle was headed off by an arbitration clause in Sarkisian’s contract that called for all legal disputes to be resolved through binding arbitration. A Los Angeles County Superior Court judge dismissed Sarkisian’s lawsuit, citing the arbitration clause. As such, the two sides will proceed to arbitration to resolve their issue.

The story is an important example of how courts will uphold arbitration clauses in contracts. If you have questions about how such clauses work and how they affect your bargaining position, an experienced business law attorney can advise you. 

The preceding is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice.