Monday, August 13, 2007, 3:01 PM

Res Judicata + Collateral Estoppel Issues For Arbitrator Under FAA, Not NCUAA

In WMS, Inc. v. Alltel Corporation, the NC COA held last week that the issues of res judicata and collateral estoppel are issues to be decided initially by an arbitrator, not a trial court, at least when the Federal Arbitration Act governs. In contrast, where North Carolina's Uniform Arbitration Act governs, res judicata and presumably collateral estoppel appear to be issues for the trial court (see, e.g., Rodgers Builders, Inc. v. McQueen, 76 N.C. App. 16, 331 S.E.2d 726 (1985), cited in WMS).

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