Hamilton Park v. 1199 SEIU — civil / arbitration — partial reversal — Ambro
The Third Circuit today affirmed in part and reversed in part in an appeal arising from an arbitration. The opening of the opinion aptly lays out the basics:
Hamilton Park Health Care Center filed a petition to vacate an arbitration award in a dispute with the 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East union. The District Court denied the petition and confirmed the award. On appeal, Hamilton Park asserts that the Court erred by approving a multi-year arbitration award when the parties’ collective bargaining agreement (“CBA”) only contemplated a single-year award. Because the parties consented at arbitration to a multi-year award, we affirm this portion of the Court’s order.
Hamilton Park also argues that, even if a multi-year award is permissible, the Court should have severed a provision authorizing a new round of arbitration at a later date. We agree; thus we reverse and remand as to this portion of the order.
The conclusion clarifies the basis for reversal:
Our deference to an arbitrator’s award does not include the rubber stamping of a self-perpetuating arbitration provision that the parties did not agree to include. We therefore reverse the portion of the District Court’s order approving the inclusion of a new arbitration provision for disputes arising for the year starting June 30, 2015. We remand the case with instructions for the Court to void only the portion of the award providing for that arbitration. We affirm the Court’s order in all other respects.
(Citation and footnote omitted).
Joining Ambro were Jordan and Scirica. The case was decided without oral argument.
Today’s opinion was the court’s first published opinion since March 11.