With the explosion of employment litigation—in particular, wage and hour lawsuits—many employers are turning to arbitration agreements as a strategy to keep defense costs down and avoid class actions. But as more and more companies make mandatory arbitration a condition of employment, the controversy surrounding the legality of such agreements escalates, with employee advocates questioning the fairness of prohibiting employees from airing their grievances to a jury or seeking class-wide relief.

And as employers seek to enforce arbitration agreements, the debate over enforceability of such provisions, including the class-action waivers that are often included in such agreements, has moved to the National Labor Relations Board and the courts.

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