Q: May a person sue a contractor in California court after his case goes through binding arbitration?
The California Contractor State Licensing Board (CSLB) arranged for the arbitration. My understanding is that the CSLB arbitration only covers violations of the California Business and Professions Code, such as poor workmanship, abandoning the project, and damage to property. If the arbitration addresses such violations, but not other issues such as fraud or conversion, can a customer sue a contractor in court after the binding arbitration is completed in order to pursue other complaints not covered by the California Business and Professions Code?
A: Probably not--unless you specifically preserved those issues on the record at the arbitration. And even then it may not be possible in California.
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