Arbitration clauses are used widely in commercial contracts. When parties agree to a contract that includes an arbitration clause, they are agreeing to solve a dispute through arbitration instead of a court of law. This can be a very effective way for companies to reduce the financial and legal risks associated with a particular contract or relationship.
However, when used in standard form contracts in circumstances where one party has no bargaining power, the effect can be unjust. A case recently heard by the Supreme Court of Canada deals with this issue. In Heller v. Uber Technologies Inc., Uber was seeking to enforce an arbitration clause in the contract with its drivers. In June, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled on the case and found the arbitration clause in Uber’s contract unenforceable.
For this forum, please read the majority reasons of the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision up to paragraph 100 and answer the following:
1. What is the question that the Supreme Court of Canada is deciding in this case?
2. What is the answer to the question and what is the reasoning?
3. Do you agree and why?