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Herron v. Best Buy Stores, L.P.

United States District Court, E.D. California

June 2, 2014

CHAD HERRON, individually, on behalf of himself and all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
v.
BEST BUY STORES, L.P., a Virginia limited partnership; TOSHIBA AMERICA INFORMATION SYSTEMS, INC., a California corporation, inclusive, Defendants.

ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT TOSHIBA AMERICA INFORMATION SYSTEMS' MOTION TO COMPEL ARBITRATION

GARLAND E. BURRELL, Jr., Senior District Judge.

Defendant Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc. ("Toshiba") moves in this putative class action for an order compelling "[P]laintiff to arbitrate his claim against T[oshiba]." (Mem. P. & A. in Supp. Mot. to Compel Arbitration ("Toshiba's Mot.") 1:3-4, ECF No. 74-1.) Plaintiff opposes the motion.

I. FACTUAL BACKGROUND

The following uncontroverted facts are germane to the motion. Contained within the box for the Toshiba laptop Plaintiff purchased at a Best Buy store was an arbitration provision, which prescribes:

Customer and Toshiba acknowledge and agree that any claim, dispute, or controversy... between Customer and Toshiba arising from or relating to (i)... the validity of this binding arbitration provision, or (ii) the use of the Product shall be resolved EXCLUSIVELY AND FINALLY BY BINDING ARBITRATION....
....
The binding arbitration provision shall be governed by the United States Federal Arbitration Act [("FAA")].

(Decl. of Don Hanson Ex. A, One (1) Year Standard Limited Warranty for Computers ("Arbitration Provision") A7, A9, ECF No. 74-3.)

Additionally, "[i]nside the box... the actual... laptop would have been completely enclosed in a plastic bag... sealed with a sticker, " (Decl. of Don Hanson ΒΆ 4, ECF No. 74-2), informing Plaintiff of the referenced arbitration provision and prescribing:

IF YOU DO NOT ACCEPT THESE CONDITIONS, RETURN THE UNOPENED PACKAGE AND ALL OTHER ITEMS INCLUDED WITH THE [LAPTOP] TO THE PLACE OF PURCHASE AND YOUR MONEY WILL BE REFUNDED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE APPLICABLE RETURN POLICY OF THE PLACE OF PURCHASE.

(Decl. of Don Hanson Ex. B, ECF No. 74-4.)

II. DISCUSSION

Toshiba argues: "Plaintiff should be compelled to arbitrate his claim against [it since] Plaintiff accepted the terms of... a prominently disclosed arbitration provision." (Toshiba's Mot. 1:2-4.) Toshiba contends: "That provision binds the parties to arbitrate on an individual basis any disputes relating to the use of [P]laintiff's laptop." ( Id. 1:4-5.)

Plaintiff counters with arguments: 1) "no agreement to arbitrate was formed between Plaintiff and T[oshiba]"; 2) "the arbitration [provision] is unconscionable, and thus unenforceable"; and 3) "T[oshiba] has waived its ...


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