Last term in In Re Frank Kent Motors, the Texas Supreme Court confirmed the enforceability of pre-dispute waivers of jury trials. Texas employers enter such agreements with at-will employees, and the court found them enforceable even if the waiver is a condition of continued employment (i.e., the employee is told that he will lose his job if he refuses to sign the agreement). Now that the high court has approved agreements to resolve disputes at the courthouse but without a jury, in-house counsel for Texas employers should consider whether their clients should use jury waivers instead of arbitration agreements to resolve disputes with employees.
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