United States District Court, N.D. California, San Jose Division
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO COMPEL
INDIVIDUAL ARBITRATION RE: DKT. NO. 38
J. DAVILA UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Accountable Healthcare Staffing and Accountable Healthcare
Holdings (“Defendants”) argue, pursuant to an
employment arbitration agreement, Plaintiff Sarah
Reynosa-Juarez (“Plaintiff”) must be compelled to
arbitrate her claims individually. Having considered the
Parties' papers, the Court agrees and
GRANTS Defendants' motion to compel
a traveling nurse, worked for Defendants at Kaiser
Permanente's San Jose Medical Center from approximately
December 2015 to February 2016. Class and Collective Action
Complaint (“Compl.”) ¶ 2, Dkt. 1. Plaintiff
routinely worked overtime and through her meal and rest
periods because her patient care obligations required her to
do so. Id. ¶¶ 8-11, 16.
to working at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, Plaintiff
signed a “Short Term Travel Contract” with
Defendants. Pursuant to this contract, “To be paid . .
. overtime, any overtime worked must be approved before the
shift is worked, in writing, by someone of authority at the
facility. Unapproved overtime will be paid to you as regular
time.” Declaration of Andrew Goldwyn (“Goldwyn
Decl.”), Ex. A at 6, Dkt. 38-1. Plaintiff contends this
resulted in her being denied overtime pay because it was not
feasible for her overtime hours to be pre-approved. Compl.
¶ 6. She also did not receive timely meal and rest
periods. Id. ¶¶ 18-20.
and Defendants dispute the legality of the arbitration
provision in the “Short Term Travel Contract.”
The agreement states:
ARBITRATION. Any dispute to this
agreement will be settled by binding arbitration conducted in
the state of Florida in accordance with the Health Care
Arbitration Rules of the AHLA Alternative Dispute Resolution
Service (c/o American Health Lawyers Association, 1120
Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 950, Washington, D.C. 20036).
Goldwyn Decl., Ex. A at 8.
emailed Plaintiff this Contract. Declaration of Sarah
Reynosa-Juarez (“Reynosa Decl.”), Ex. B, Dkt.
43-2. The subject line of the email directed Plaintiff to
“Please Sign” and the body of the email
instructed Plaintiff that she would be unable to start work
at Kaiser until this contract was signed. Id.
Plaintiff had to sign and return the document within 24 hours
or her contract would be subject to cancelation. Id.
The email neither advised Plaintiff that the Contract
contained an arbitration clause, nor did Defendants orally
explain there was an arbitration clause. Id.;
Reynosa Decl. ¶ 26. By signing, however, Plaintiff
attested that she verified and “read and under[stood]
the contents [of the contract].” Goldwyn Decl., Ex. A
at 8. Plaintiff signed the contract. Id.
October 15, 2018, Plaintiff filed a class and collective
action complaint to seek redress for violations of the Fair
Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), the California
Labor Code, and Unfair Competition Laws. See Compl.
January 4, 2019, Defendants filed a motion to compel
arbitration of Plaintiff's individual claims. Dkt. 15. On
February 1, 2019, however, Defendants voluntarily withdrew
this motion without prejudice. Dkt. 25. On February 23, 2019,
the parties stipulated to extend the time for Defendants to
file an Answer to Plaintiff's Complaint until March 4,
2019. Dkt. 27. On March 5, 2019, the parties again stipulated
to extend the time for Defendants to file an answer. Dkt. 29.
Defendants then filed an answer on March 11, 2019. Dkt. 30.
April 17, the parties submitted a Joint Case Management
Conference Statement with a proposed schedule. Dkt. 32. The
parties met and conferred as required by Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 26(f), undertook various discovery, and had
an ADR Phone Conference. Dkt. 37.
16, 2019, after the Supreme Court decided Lamps Plus,
Inc. v. Varela, 139 S.Ct. 1407 (2019), Defendants
renewed their motion to compel arbitration. Memorandum in
Support of Motion for Lack of Subject-Matter Jurisdiction and
Compel Individual Arbitration (“Mot.”), Dkt. 38.
Plaintiff filed an opposition on May 30, 2019.
Opposition/Response re Memorandum (“Opp.”), Dkt.
43. On June 6, 2019, Defendants filed a reply. Reply re
Memorandum (“Reply”), Dkt. 45. The Court now
considers Defendants' Motion to Compel Arbitration.
to Federal Rule of Evidence 201, the Court may take judicial
notice of information or facts (1) generally known within the
Court's jurisdiction, and (2) capable of accurate and
ready determination by sources whose accuracy cannot
reasonably be questioned. Fed.R.Evid. 201 (b)-(c).
parties request this Court to judicially notice the American
Health Lawyers Association (“AHLA”) Dispute
Resolution Service Rules of Procedure for Employment
Arbitration, which govern the Arbitration Clause between the
parties. See Dkt. 38-2; 43-1. The AHLA Rules are
easily accessible on the AHLA's website. See Wilson
v. United Health Grp., Inc., 2012 WL 6088318, at *4 n.4
(E.D. Cal. Dec. 6, 2012) (taking judicial notice of the
American Arbitration Association (“AAA”) ...