Skip to main content

My roommate moved out and I took her to small claims court. A decision was made by an arbitrator. Can I dispute this decision?

New York, NY |

The roommate that moved out is on the lease. She left without any notice and made no attempt to find a replacement roommate. She just stopped paying. I'm being threatened with eviction. When I took her to court I was confident that I would win because since she is on the lease, she is responsible. I sued for the 2 months of rent which she didn't pay. One of which my other roommate and I had to cover. I also sued for the following 3 months of rent that remained on the lease. The arbitrator ruled in my favor but only for 1 month of rent. I don't see how this makes any sense. Why would she only be liable for 1 month's rent? I really need to get her to pay because my other roommate and I can't afford to keep covering her rent. I need to get this decision changed somehow. Is there any way I can

Attorney Answers 1



Courts generally encourage litigants to engage in out of court settlement efforts. Arbitration Orders are more often than not given respect as final. If this was a court sponsored arbitration program all the more so, and you may even have signed a consent to arbitration agreement. Those agreements provide that the parties agree to a number of terms, one of which is that people who enter into arbitration agree that they will not appeal.

I can not answer your questions as to what makes "sense" because I was not there and I do not know the facts and obviously it would take me a great deal of time to gather all of the pertinent information from all of the parties and to then come to my own conclusions.

That is the precise reason that the courts generally will uphold an arbitration agreement. The reasoning is that the courts and the parties have delegated the task of fact finding and dispute resolution to someone else that they trust. Therefore, the court will not engage in second guessing.

A Boston area attorney actually asked me a very similar question earlier this year when an arbitration result was not favorable. My advice was that it requires very heavy lifting to even consider overturning an arbitration decision, and the likelihood of success is low. This is why when my office takes part in an arbitration we spend a great deal of time on preparation.

This answer is provided for informational purposes only. True legal advice can only be given by an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction, experienced in the law in the area in which your concern lies, in an office consultation.

Mark as helpful

1 found this helpful