On June 10, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) does not permit a court to vacate an arbitrator’s decision to allow class arbitration where the parties authorized the arbitrator to decide the issue. Oxford Health Plans LLC v. Sutter, No. 12-135, 569 U.S. ___ (2013). In this case, a health insurance company sought to overturn an arbitrator’s holding that the contract between the company and a doctor claiming the insurer failed to fully pay him and similarly situated doctors authorized class arbitration of the claims. The parties agreed that the arbitrator should decide the issue, but in seeking to overturn the decision, the insurer argued that the arbitrator exceeded his authority under the FAA. Citing the narrow standard of judicial review under the relevant FAA provision and the “heavy burden” a party bears under that provision, the Court held that the parties’ agreement to allow the arbitrator to decide the issue of class arbitration of the claims is sufficient to show that he did not exceed his powers. The insurer argued that the Court’s holding in Stolt-Nielsen S.A. v. AnimalFeeds Int’l Corp., 559 U.S. 662 (2010) that an arbitration panel exceeded its powers when it ordered a party to submit to class arbitration should apply here. The Court rejected that argument, explaining that in Stolt-Nielsen the Court overturned the arbitral decision because it lacked any contractual basis for requiring class procedures, whereas in this case, the arbitrator construed the parties’ contract at their request.