Stevens et al v. Jiffy Lube International, Inc.

Northern District of California, cand-4:2015-cv-01511

ORDER by Judge Haywood S. Gilliam, Jr. Granting {{29}} Stipulation to Dismiss Action and Compel Arbitration on Modified Terms

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1 Vincent M. Spohn, Esq. (SBN 092334) vms@vspohnlaw.com 2 Law Offices of Vincent Martin Spohn, A.P.C. P.O. Box 5748 3 Napa, California 94581-0748 Telephone: (707) 255-1885 4 Facsimile: (707) 255-0974 5 Attorney for Plaintiffs RANDY STEVENS and ELISSA STEVENS 6 7 8 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 9 NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 10 11 RANDY STEVENS and ELISSA STEVENS, Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 12 Plaintiffs, STIPULATION AND ORDER TO 13 v. DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS 14 JIFFY LUBE INTERNATIONAL, INC. A CORPORATION, and DOES 1 through 50, Date: September 3, 2015 15 inclusive, Time: 2:00 p.m. Judge: Honorable Haywood S. Gilliam, Jr. 16 Defendant. Dept.: Courtroom 15, 18th Floor 17 18 19 20 Plaintiffs RANDY STEVENS and ELISSA STEVENS, through their counsel Vincent M. 21 Spohn, Esq., and Defendant JIFFY LUBE INTERNATIONAL, INC., through its counsel Marc A. 22 Koonin, Esq., (collectively referred to herein as the "Parties") hereby submit this Stipulation and 23 [Proposed] Order to Dismiss Action and Compel Arbitration on Modified Terms. 24 STIPULATION 25 WHEREAS, on or about January 8, 1997, Plaintiffs Randy and Elissa Stevens ("Plaintiffs") 26 entered into a Franchise Agreement with Defendant Jiffy Lube International, Inc. ("Jiffy Lube" or 27 "Defendant") regarding a Jiffy Lube franchise in Napa, California (the "Napa Franchise") which 28 81636060v1 1 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 contained an arbitration provision (the "Arbitration Agreement") concerning disputes regarding the 2 terms and conditions of the Franchise Agreement or the relationship of the Parties. 3 WHEREAS, Defendant Jiffy Lube terminated the Franchise Agreement for the Napa Franchise 4 on or about June 25, 2013. 5 WHEREAS, Plaintiffs were dissatisfied with some of the terms of the Arbitration Agreement 6 and filed the current action in Napa County Superior Court on February 25, 2015 and served Jiffy 7 Lube with the Complaint on March 4, 2015. 8 WHEREAS, on April 2, 2015, Jiffy Lube removed this action to the U.S. District Court for the 9 Northern District of California on the basis of diversity jurisdiction. 10 WHEREAS, on April 9, 2015 Defendant filed a Motion to Compel Arbitration and Dismiss 11 Complaint for Failure to State a Claim or, Alternatively, to Stay Action Pending Arbitration ("Motion 12 to Compel Arbitration") 13 WHEREAS, the Motion to Compel Arbitration hearing was originally calendared for August 14 20, 2015. 15 WHEREAS, the Parties filed a Stipulation to Continue to Hearing Regarding Defendant's 16 Motion to Compel Arbitration and Dismiss Complaint or, Alternatively, to Stay Action Pending 17 Arbitration on August 19, 2015. 18 WHEREAS, on August 20, 2015, the Court issued an Order granting the Stipulation and 19 setting the hearing for the Motion to Compel Arbitration on September 3, 2015. 20 WHEREAS, the hearing on the Motion to Compel Arbitration is currently scheduled to be 21 heard on September 3, 2015, at 2:00 p.m.; 22 WHEREAS, the Parties have negotiated to resolve their differences regarding the terms of the 23 Arbitration Agreement and are willing to proceed with arbitration under the terms of the Arbitration 24 Agreement as modified below. 25 NOW, THEREFORE, PLAINTIFFS AND DEFENDANT, BY AND THROUGH THEIR 26 RESPECTIVE COUNSEL OF RECORD, HEREBY STIPULATE AS FOLLOWS: 27 1. The Parties request that the Court dismiss the First Cause of Action, for deceptive 28 business practices under the Consumer Legal Remedies Act (Cal. Civ. Code § 1750, et 81636060v1 2 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 seq.) and the Third Cause of Action for relief under the Unfair Competition Law (Cal. 2 Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200 et seq.) with prejudice. 3 2. The Parties request that the Court grant the Defendant's Motion to Dismiss, dismissing 4 the remaining portions of this Action in its entirety pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil 5 Procedure 12(b)(6), with each party to bear his, her, or its own costs and fees. 6 3. The Parties further request that this Court order the Plaintiffs to pursue their claims in 7 this matter in arbitration before the American Arbitration Association consistent with 8 the terms of the Franchise Agreement as modified by the Court's Order and/or by any 9 further written stipulations of the Parties. Any such arbitration will be held in San 10 Francisco, California, and, except to the extent that the Federal Arbitration Act controls 11 issues of arbitrability and related enforcement, the arbitration will proceed applying the 12 substantive law of California except to the extent that any federal issues must be 13 construed under federal law (or the applicable rules adopted by the Parties, including 14 the arbitration rules of the American Arbitration Association ("AAA), provide 15 otherwise). However, the terms of the Arbitration Agreement are modified as follows: 16 a. So long as Plaintiffs re-submit their claims to arbitration and do not pursue any 17 of the dismissed claims and/or any equitable relief, within one month of the 18 dismissal of this Action, Jiffy Lube will waive the contractual statute of 19 limitations with regard to the remaining claims in the current complaint. In 20 doing so, Defendant is allowing the remaining claims in arbitration to relate 21 back to the date of the Complaint, but is not waiving any other rights regarding 22 limitations; 23 b. Arbitration shall proceed before one arbitrator only rather than a panel of three 24 arbitrators, with the arbitrator to be selected consistent with the applicable rules 25 and practices of the AAA; 26 c. Defendant shall pay the hourly rate for the arbitrator for all fees associated with 27 the arbitration and the arbitrator shall not award the costs of any arbitration fees 28 to the prevailing party. The Parties shall each be responsible for the payment of 81636060v1 3 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 their own attorney fees related to the arbitration and the arbitrator shall not 2 award any attorney fees to the prevailing party. Plaintiffs shall pay the initial 3 administrative filing fee to the AAA, based on alleged damages of $800,000, for 4 the arbitration, subject to reimbursement by the Defendant. Defendant shall 5 provide reimbursement to Plaintiffs' counsel upon submission of an invoice 6 proving payment of the fees to Defendant's counsel, with reimbursement to be 7 made within 30 days of receipt of the invoice. Defendant shall also pay for any 8 related final arbitration administrative fee. 9 d. Plaintiffs shall not seek any equitable relief in arbitration; 10 e. Plaintiffs can pursue statutory claims for punitive damages only, but not any 11 punitive damages based on common law causes of action; and 12 f. The Parties agree that the arbitration shall be conducted without delay absent an 13 agreement of the Parties or a showing of good cause to be determined by the 14 arbitrator. 15 4. Although Plaintiffs are prohibited from pursuing their dismissed claims against Jiffy 16 Lube in a judicial forum by this Order, this Order is not intended to and does not 17 prevent Plaintiffs or Defendant from appearing before this or any other court of 18 competent jurisdiction to confirm, correct, modify, or vacate any resulting arbitral 19 award or decision, or to enter or enforce a judgment based upon any resulting arbitral 20 award or decision, or to further compel arbitration. 21 22 IT IS SO STIPULATED BY AND THROUGH COUNSEL OF RECORD: 23 24 Dated: September 2, 2015 LAW OFFICES OF VINCENT M. SPOHN, A.P.C. 25 By /s/ Vincent M. Spohn 26 VINCENT M. SPOHN, ESQ. 27 Attorney for Plaintiffs RANDY STEVENS and ELISSA STEVENS 28 81636060v1 4 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 Dated: September 2, 2015 SEDGWICK L.L.P. 2 3 By /s/ Marc A. Koonin MARC A. KOONIN, ESQ. 4 Attorneys for Defendant JIFFY LUBE INTERNATIONAL, INC. 5 A CORPORATION 6 7 CERTIFICATE OF CONCURRENCE 8 I, Vincent M Spohn, hereby declare: 9 Pursuant to Local Rule No. 5-1(i)(3) concurrence in the filing of the document has been 10 obtained from Marc A. Koonin to show his signature as /s/ on this pleading in lieu of his physical 11 signature on the document. 12 I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing is 13 true and correct and that this declaration is executed at San Rafael, California on September 2, 2015. 14 15 /s/ Vincent M. Spohn Vincent M. Spohn 16 17 18 ORDER 19 The Court, having considered the Parties' stipulation, hereby grants the Parties' requests and 20 orders the following: 21 1. The First Cause of Action, for deceptive business practices under the Consumer Legal 22 Remedies Act (Cal. Civ. Code § 1750, et seq.) and the Third Cause of Action for relief 23 under the Unfair Competition Law (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200 et seq.) are hereby 24 DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE. 25 2. This Action (including all remaining portions of this Action) is DISMISSED IN ITS 26 ENTIRETY pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), with each party to 27 bear his, her, or its own costs and fees. 28 81636060v1 5 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 3. Plaintiffs shall pursue their claims in this matter, if at all, in arbitration before the 2 American Arbitration Association consistent with the terms of the Franchise Agreement 3 as modified by this Order and/or by any further written stipulations of the Parties. Any 4 such arbitration will be held in San Francisco, California, and, except to the extent that 5 the Federal Arbitration Act controls issues of arbitrability and related enforcement, the 6 arbitration will proceed applying the substantive law of California except to the extent 7 that any federal issues must be construed under federal law (or the applicable rules 8 adopted by the Parties, including the arbitration rules of the AAA, provide otherwise). 9 However, the terms of the Arbitration Agreement are modified as follows: 10 a. So long as Plaintiffs re-submit their claims to arbitration and do not pursue any 11 of the dismissed claims and/or any equitable relief, within one month of the 12 dismissal of this Action, Jiffy Lube will waive the contractual statute of 13 limitations with regard to the remaining claims in the current complaint. In 14 doing so, Defendant is allowing the remaining claims in arbitration to relate 15 back to the date of the Complaint, but is not waiving any other rights regarding 16 limitations; 17 b. Arbitration shall proceed before one arbitrator only rather than a panel of three 18 arbitrators, with the arbitrator to be selected consistent with the applicable rules 19 and practices of the AAA; 20 c. Defendant shall pay the hourly rate for the arbitrator for all fees associated with 21 the arbitration and the arbitrator shall not award the costs of any arbitration fees 22 to the prevailing party. The Parties shall each be responsible for the payment of 23 their own attorney fees related to the arbitration and the arbitrator shall not 24 award any attorney fees to the prevailing party. Plaintiffs shall pay the initial 25 administrative filing fee to the AAA, based on alleged damages of $800,000, for 26 the arbitration, subject to reimbursement by the Defendant. Defendant shall 27 provide reimbursement to Plaintiffs' counsel upon submission of an invoice 28 proving payment of the fees to Defendant's counsel, with reimbursement to be 81636060v1 6 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511 1 made within 30 days of receipt of the invoice. Defendant shall also pay for any 2 related final arbitration administrative fee.; 3 d. Plaintiffs shall not seek any equitable relief in arbitration; 4 e. Plaintiffs can pursue statutory claims for punitive damages only, but not any 5 punitive damages based on common law causes of action; and 6 f. The Parties shall conduct the arbitration without delay absent an agreement of 7 the Parties or a showing of good cause to be determined by the arbitrator. 8 4. Although Plaintiffs are prohibited from pursuing their dismissed claims against Jiffy 9 Lube in a judicial forum by this Order, this Order is not intended to and does not 10 prevent Plaintiffs or Defendant from appearing before this or any other court of 11 competent jurisdiction to confirm, correct, modify, or vacate any resulting arbitral 12 award or decision, or to enter or enforce a judgment based upon any resulting arbitral 13 award or decision, or to further compel arbitration. 14 IT IS SO ORDERED. 15 Dated: September 3, 2015 _____________________________________ 16 HONORABLE HAYWOOD S. GILLIAM, JR. 17 United States District Court Judge 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 81636060v1 7 STIP. AND [PROP.] ORDER TO DISMISS ACTION AND COMPEL ARBITRATION ON MODIFIED TERMS Case No. 3:15-cv-1511