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January 4, 2019

John Shaw and Tim Wallner Successfully Compel Arbitration of Claims Brought By Nonsignatory to Arbitration Clause


John Shaw and Tim Wallner recently obtained an order granting their motion to compel arbitration of claims brought by a putative third-party beneficiary, but non-signatory, of an account contract on behalf of their broker-dealer client. After over a year of litigation against the trustee of a trust to which Plaintiff was a beneficiary, Plaintiff amended his petition to add the broker-dealer client as a co-defendant. While there was an arbitration clause related to the accounts at issue in the lawsuit, Plaintiff was not a signatory to the contract containing the arbitration clause and refused to submit his claims in arbitration. John and Tim moved to compel arbitration against the non-signatory Plaintiff, and after full briefing and oral argument, prevailed in obtaining an order compelling arbitration, despite novel arguments of first impression raised in opposition by Plaintiff.

Plaintiff relied on recent Missouri precedent to attack the order compelling arbitration by seeking a successive writs of mandamus from the Missouri  Court of Appeals – Eastern District, and then the Missouri Supreme Court. John and Tim vigorously opposed both writ petitions, and successfully obtained orders denying the writ petitions from both the Missouri Court of Appeals – Eastern District and the Missouri Supreme Court.