A panel of Pennsylvania Superior Court judges appeared skeptical of defunct law firm Wolf Block’s argument Tuesday that a former partner’s claims for severance payments should be heard in confidential arbitration rather than in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court.

Wolf Block’s attorney, Leslie D. Corwin of Greenberg Traurig in New York, argued a 2003 partnership agreement requires mandatory arbitration even though former partner Michael Budin never signed the agreement and left the firm before it was ratified. Budin’s attorney, Gavin Lentz of Bochetto & Lentz, argued it was the separation agreement Budin signed that controlled in the case, and that does not include an arbitration clause.

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