Messina v. North Central Distrib., No. 15-2323 (8th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
Plaintiff filed suit against his former employer, Yosemite, in state court for breach of contract and wrongful termination. After removal to federal court, and eight months after plaintiff filed his complaint, Yosemite moved to compel arbitration. The court affirmed the district court's denial of Yosemite's motion to arbitrate because Yosemite had waived its right to arbitration. In this case, although Yosemite knew of its existing right to arbitration, it acted inconsistently with this right by proceeding in court for more than eight months before asserting that right. Yosemite invoked the litigation machinery by removing the case to federal court, filing an answer, participating in a pretrial hearing, filing a scheduling report which recommended a trial date and discovery deadlines, and filing a motion to transfer venue. Yosemite also failed to do all it could reasonably have been expected to do to raise its right at the earliest feasible time. Finally, Yosemite's actions caused plaintiff prejudice.