Rochester, NY asked in Arbitration / Mediation Law for New York

Q: Can an arbitrator deny a witness based on the belief that they hold bias?

Witness was a former employee who was fired at will and not for cause. Arbitrator based opinion solely on that knowledge and not on any presented statements that would lead one to conclude the witness held bias against their former employer.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
  • Arbitration & Mediation Lawyer
  • Little Neck, NY
  • Licensed in New York

A: In court proceedings, the credibility of a witness can generally be impeached upon a showing of bias, hostility, or the witness having an interest in the outcome of a court's decision. In arbitration, it could depend on the arbitration forum and the arbitrator. Arbitrations can sometimes loosen the rules of evidence and not apply them as strictly as in a supreme court setting, in the interest of streamlining things. But bias is a fairly fundamental and significant attribute, and arbitrators are no more likely to allow it than trial court judges. Good luck

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