Review of Court Decisions - Dispute Resolution Journal - Vol. 28, No. 1
Originally from Dispute Resolution Journal
PARTNERSHIP - RECISSION OF AGREEMENT - WRIT OF MANDATE FOR AN ACCOUNTING
Where a demand for arbitration under a partnership agreement requested several forms of relief in the alternative and the award provided for rescission of the agreement and disposition of property and monies, the court held that a writ of mandate for an accounting was improper as all claims had been settled. The parties had attempted to merge their law practices but when a dispute arose and arbitration was held, the award found "mutual mistake" and provided for personal property, work in progress and monies received and outstanding. One party sought to vacate the award so far as it purported to settle all claims and to compel an accounting, claiming that there had been an oral stipulation that a bifurcated proceeding had been agreed upon. The court held that the stipulation was unproven and that there is a strong presumption of validity which attaches to arbitral awards. Since it was unlikely that an accounting would be required in the event of rescission and since the arbitrator had testified that all the issues were before him and substantially all the proof was given at the hearings, the award was confirmed in full, being a valid award, balancing the equities and unimpeachable under the statutory standards.
Mullane v. Pope; 1 Civ. 27566 and 1 Civ. 27567, Ct. App. Div.2, California (decided May 20, 1971).