The background of this case is as follows. Lift Equipment Certification Co., a heavy equipment manufacturer, was contracted by Lawrence Leasing Corp., a shipping company to redesign one of Lawrence’s cranes. The deal fell through, and the parties proceeded to arbitration. The arbitrator awarded both parties significant sums of money. However, plaintiff Lift believed that defendant Lawrence received too much in the arbitration award, and that it received too little. Thus, it moved in federal court in Nevada for the arbitration award to be vacated, and Lawrence cross-moved for the award to be confirmed.

The Nevada federal court noted that its review of arbitration awards is limited, and that plaintiff Lift faced a “heavy burden to prove by clear and convincing evidence that the arbitrator intentionally disregarded obvious legal principles” or that the decision is “utterly without support in the record.” The court then held that plaintiff Lift failed to prove by clear and convincing evidence that the arbitrator “manifestly disregarded the law” or that the award was “arbitrary and capricious.” Thus, the court denied Lift’s motion to vacate the arbitration award, and granted Lawrence’s cross motion to confirm the arbitration award. However, the court declined defendant Lawrence’s request for legal fees since plaintiff’s claims were “far from frivolous.”

Lift Equipment Certification Co., Inc. v. Lawrence Leasing Corp., No. 2:15-CV-01987-JAD-GWF (USDC D. Nev. Sept. 23, 2016)