Since a motion to vacate, modify, or correct an award must be served within 3 months after the award is filed or delivered (9 U.S.C. § 12), and Plaintiff filed its opposition to confirmation nearly four months after the award was signed by the arbitrator, the Eastern District Court of California found Plaintiff’s defenses were barred by the statute of limitations, and the award was confirmed.

Plaintiff’s action in Federal Court was stayed as the parties were compelled to arbitrate. Although Plaintiff commenced AAA arbitration, the arbitrator ordered Plaintiff to add the corporation he owned as a party and secure counsel. Plaintiff did not meet the deadline, despite numerous extensions and as a result, the arbitrator issued an order dismissing the Complaint with prejudice if Plaintiff failed to provide AAA with a letter of representation within 20 days. When Plaintiff again failed to obtain counsel, Defendants moved to confirm the arbitration award.

Plaintiff opposed confirmation because: (1) the order of dismissal did not constitute an award under 9 U.S.C. § 11(b); and (2) the arbitrator exceeded her power because she refused to hear material evidence. The Court disagreed on statute of limitations grounds, and the award was confirmed.

Dinh Nguy v. Cinch Bakery Equipment, LLC, et al., 2:13-cv-02283 (USDC E.D. Cal. May 5, 2016)