Wednesday, September 7, 2016

9th Circuit Court of Appeals, Mohamed v. Uber Technologies, Inc., Docket 15-16178, 15-16250, for publication, opinion by Judge Richard Clifton


Agency relationship: Arbitration:

(…) As the California Court of Appeal has noted elsewhere, however, “complaints in actions against multiple defendants commonly include conclusory allegations that all of the defendants were each other’s agents or employees and were acting within the scope of their agency or employment.” Barsegian v. Kessler & Kessler, 155 Cal. Rptr. 3d 567, 571 (Cal. Ct. App. 2013). If Hirease were correct that such allegations were sufficient to establish an agency relationship for the purpose of compelling arbitration, “in every multidefendant case in which the complaint contained such boilerplate allegations of mutual agency, as long as one defendant had entered into an arbitration agreement with the plaintiff, every defendant would be able to compel arbitration, regardless of how tenuous or nonexistent the connections among the defendants might actually be.” Id. As such, generalized allegations of an agency relationship made in a complaint are not, by themselves, a sufficient ground on which to compel arbitration when “the mutual agency of all defendants is not a judicially admitted fact.” Id. at 573. There has been no such judicial admission here.

There is no specific indication of an actual agency relationship between Uber and Hirease, either in the complaint or elsewhere in the record. An agency relationship “requires that the principal maintain control over the agent’s actions.” Murphy, 724 F.3d at 1232. Mohamed did not allege any facts suggesting that Uber maintained control over Hirease’s actions, or vice versa.


(9th Circuit Court of Appeals, Mohamed v. Uber Technologies, Inc., Docket 15-16178, 15-16250, for publication, opinion by Judge Richard Clifton, Sept. 7, 2016).


Droit de l’”agency” : la pratique judiciaire a montré que les mémoires dans des actions contre plusieurs défendeurs contiennent régulièrement le simple allégué de partie affirmant sans autres que tous les défendeurs étaient agents ou employés les uns des autres et qu’ils agissaient dans le cadre de leurs relations d’ »agency » ou découlant de contrats de travail. Si de telles allégations générales étaient suffisantes pour établir une relation d’ »agency » en vue de contraindre à l’arbitrage, chaque défendeur serait en mesure de solliciter l’arbitrage en alléguant une relation ténue ou inexistante d’ »agency » entre les différents défendeurs, à partir du moment où seul l’un des défendeurs serait partie à la convention d’arbitrage.

Une relation d’ »agency » exige que le « principal » maintienne un contrôle sur les activités de l’agent.

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