Review of Court Decisions - Dispute Resolution Journal - Vol. 46, No. 1
Originally from Dispute Resolution Journal
COMMERCIAL-EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT -INJUNCTION-DECLARATORY JUDGMENT -JURISDICTION OF THE COURT -FLORIDA
Because the question of which documents physically constitute the contract entered into by the parties is a question of law, the matter is for the court, not the arbitrator, to decide.
Melvin Bauer is an agent employed by United Services General Life, an Iowa-based national insurance company. The parties entered into an employment agreement, which included an arbitration provision. The agreement also incorporated other documents, one of which was the subject of a declaratory judgment action filed by Bauer in connection with a dispute over certain sales commissions. The trial court granted Bauer his motion for an injunction to prevent arbitration but failed to rule on the declaratory judgment. United unsuccessfully moved to dissolve the injunction and appealed.
The court noted at the outset that the dispute was subject to arbitration. At issue, however, was the question of who should decide which documents physically constitute the contract entered into by the parties.