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"We're very pleased that the bulk of the claims are going to arbitration," Hall said.
The Seenos filed the lawsuit in January claiming Whittemore misappropriated Wingfield funds to buy homes and cars, and used Wingfield money to put on political fundraisers, his daughter's wedding and other events. The Seenos added Mamer as a defendant soon after, claiming he breached his contract by sharing company secrets with Whittemore.
They also allow the dispute to be resolved "in private," Horn said.
Horn also said it made sense for the judge to send part of the case to arbitration but hold the rest of the issues in court because some of the claims could lead to criminal charges. Some issues simply are not "arbitrable," he said.
relating to the company's operating agreement should be heard by an arbitrator, but many of the claims involving the alleged embezzlement of millions must be heard by a jury.
But Whittemore's lawyer, Ann Hall, challenged Robison's claim. She said the judge sent nine of the 13 claims in the Wingfield lawsuit to arbitration.
Whittemore and Brad Mamer, who was president of Whittemore's Coyote Springs development company, had asked a judge to set aside a lawsuit filed by the new Wingfield owners. They said their contracts demanded that all disputes go to arbitration.
Many contracts for items as diverse as cellphones, health insurance and employment now include a binding arbitration provision because arbitration is "faster, cheaper and final," Horn said.
"We consider it a favorable ruling," Robison said in an interview Tuesday. "The primary claims in the lawsuit will be litigated before a jury, and that's what we wanted."
Clark County District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez ruled this week that some of the issues raised in the Seenos' lawsuit Converse High Tops Sale Mens
Bowen said the lawsuit filed by the Seenos claims breaches of the operating agreement and the employee agreement; therefore, arbitration is required. Bowen said he asked the Seeno lawyer to send the case to an arbitrator, but the Seenos didn't respond, Bowen said in his motion.
Harvey Whittemore in an April 2012 photo.(Photo: RGJ Converse Brown Leather
Whittemore responded with a suit in federal court accusing the Seenos of racketeering. He said they threatened him with death and bodily harm if he didn't give up his assets.
Whittemore's attempt to move the Wingfield case to arbitration is not surprising but is a little unusual, said John Horn, an adjunct professor of alternative dispute resolution at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. Many companies now add mandatory binding arbitration to their contracts, but usually it's the company, not employees or managers, who cite that requirement when a problem arrises.
file photo)Attempts by embattled ex lobbyist Harvey Whittemore and his former star employee to move a high profile lawsuit alleging numerous wrongdoings out of the courtroom and into arbitration have failed.
But some criticize the practice, arguing that arbitration forces customers and employees to sign away their constitutional right to take their complaint to court. Critics also don't like that arbitration hearings and resolutions are usually kept secret.
Harvey Whittemore has to face a jury and arbitration in lawsuit
"In exchange for the offer of employment extended by the Company, any controversy between you and the Company arising out of your employment or the termination of your employment shall be resolved by binding arbitration at the insistence of either you or the company," the agreement states.
The Converse Dainty Low Trainers Wingfield and Coyote Springs operating and employee agreements state that all disputes must be resolved through mandatory arbitration, he said in a motion asking the judge to put the case on hold until an arbitration can be completed.
Robison disputed that, saying "the important money claims involving the embezzlement and misappropriation of funds are going to the jury."
Instead, Whittemore and his former partners at the Wingfield Nevada Group are scheduled to meet in Clark County District Court on Friday to set a trial Converse Shoes High Cut For Girls
But Whittemore's lawyer, Dan Bowen, said in court documents that the Wingfield case should have been set to an arbitrator.
But Kent Robison, lawyer for Thomas and Albert Seeno Jr., objected. Robison said in court documents that Whittemore tried to move the case out of court because he didn't want a jury and the public to hear how he "pillaged" and "looted" assets from the company.
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