Oct 22

Kentucky Reaffirms Enforceability Of Arbitration Clauses

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On August 21, 2008, the Kentucky Court of Appeals rendered the decision in Dutschke v. Jim Russell Realtors, et. al., affirming the enforceability of arbitration agreements in real estate Sale and Purchase Contracts. This decision became final in May of 2009 when the Supreme Court rejected the Dutschke’s motion for discretionary review.

The Dutschke’s had argued that the arbitration clause was unenforceable and the arbitration statute was unconstitutional. The Court of Appeals, in a thorough and learned decision, rejected both arguments, citing the recent cases of Louisville v. Peterbilt and Marks v. Bean. The Court reaffirmed Kentucky’s commitment to arbitration as a valid, useful, and expedient alternative to traditional civil litigation.

The Court of Appeals noted that Kentucky’s Second, Third, and Fourth Constitutions all provide for arbitration, going back over two hundred years. In addition, Kentucky’s Uniform Arbitration Act, KRS Chapter 417, is constitutional and provides for a level of judicial review consistent with the underlying purpose of arbitration generally, one of which is to avoid the time and expense involved with courtroom litigation; is authorized by Section 250 of the Constitution; and moreover, is sufficient to comply with the requirements of Section 2 of the Constitution.

If you would like a copy of the complete Dutschke v. Jim Russell Realtors, et. al. opinion, please contact our office and we would be happy to provide one for your review.