In a decision issued November 17, 2015 the Appellate Court of Connecticut affirmed the decision of the Superior Court, that confirmed an arbitration award that terminated the franchisee’s Subway(tm) franchise, and remanded the case back to the lower court for further findings of fact as to damages.
In affirming the decision , the Court of Appeals ruled that it was not error for the lower court to confirm an arbitration award despite the fact that that the Subway(tm) franchisor, Doctor’s Associates Inc. (“DAI”) had not filed an application to confirm the arbitration award. The Court reasoned that objecting to an application to vacate an award (and later moving for confirmation) provided the court with sufficient jurisdiction to decide either to confirm or vacate the award.
In deciding the case, the Court of Appeals reiterated that “Because we favor arbitration as a means of settling private disputes, we undertake judicial review of arbitration awards in a manner designed to minimize interference with an efficient and economical system of alternative dispute resolution.”
DAI claimed that the lower court’s decision confirming the award entitled it to monetary damages in excess of $145,405.29 based upon the arbitrator’s award of damages of $250/day for each day that the franchisee continued to operate his franchise after the date of the arbitration award. The franchisee claimed on appeal that the lower court erred when it issued a judgment award $250/day from the date of the judgment.
The Court of appeals found that the lower court “ committed error by failing to effect the terms of the judgment upon the award.” Finding that “[t]he court, in entering its purported judgment regarding damages, merely restated selected terms of the arbitration award and failed to effectuate the award with a calculation of damages despite a properly pleaded request to do so.” Accordingly the Court of Appeals remanded the matter for a calculation of damages.
Editor’s Note: This was the second Appellate Court decision related to actions to terminate franchises of the Subway(tm) franchise that ended unhappily for the franchisee. In both appeals and the arbitrations and lower court proceedings the franchisee was represented by Attorney Jonathan M. Starble. DAI was represented by Attorney Frank Mottola, III. Alderman & Alderman, LLC did not represent any parties in these actions.
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