, Inc. v. Arobo Trade Inc.

Filing 7

ORDER deferring ruling on Amazon's 1 petition to confirm an arbitration award and directing Amazon to submit supplemental briefing by 8/3/2017. Signed by Judge James L. Robart. (PM)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT WESTERN DISTRICT OF WASHINGTON AT SEATTLE 8 9 10 AMAZON.COM, INC., Petitioner, 11 v. CASE NO. C17-0804JLR ORDER DIRECTING SUPPLEMENTAL BRIEFING 12 13 AROBO TRADE, INC., Respondent. 14 15 Before the court is Petitioner, Inc.’s petition to confirm an 16 arbitration award pursuant to the Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), 9 U.S.C. § 1 et seq. 17 (Pet. (Dkt. # 1).) Respondent Arobo Trade, Inc., failed to respond to the petition. (See 18 Dkt.) For the following reasons, the court DIRECTS Amazon to provide further briefing 19 on whether it has complied with the service requirements of 9 U.S.C. § 9. 20 The FAA allows the prevailing party in certain arbitration proceedings to apply to 21 a federal district court to reduce the arbitration award to judgment. 9 U.S.C. § 9. Before 22 the court enters judgment, however, the FAA requires the petitioner to satisfy certain ORDER - 1 1 prerequisites. See id. In order to establish the court’s jurisdiction over the adverse party, 2 the FAA requires notice of the application to be served on that party. Id. The proper 3 form of service varies depending on whether the adverse party is a resident of the district 4 in which the award was made: 5 If the adverse party is a resident of the district within which the award was made, such service shall be made upon the adverse party or his attorney as prescribed by law for service of notice of motion in an action in the same court. If the adverse party shall be a nonresident, then the notice of the application shall be served by the marshal of any district within which the adverse party may be found in like manner as other process of the court. 6 7 8 Id. 9 “[T]here is scant caselaw interpreting the FAA’s § 9 service requirement.” 10 Hancor, Inc. v. R & R Eng’g Prods., Inc., 381 F. Supp. 2d 12, 15 (D.P.R. 2005). To the 11 extent caselaw exists, “district courts around the country are applying Section 9’s service 12 requirement inconsistently.” Logan & Kanawha Coal Co. v. Detherage Coal Sales, LLC, 13 789 F. Supp. 2d 716, 718 (S.D.W. Va. 2011). Although some district courts have strictly 14 interpreted Section 9 of the FAA to require service by the United States Marshal, others 15 have found the requirement anachronistic and permitted some flexibility in the method of 16 service. See id. at 718-20 (collecting cases); see also id. at 722 (“[S]ervice on a 17 nonresident, as authorized by Section 9, is proper and should be effected by the U.S. 18 Marshals Service.”). 19 Amazon acknowledges that Arobo is a nonresident. (Pet. ¶ 8.) However, Amazon 20 served process on Arobo’s registered agent via special process server—not the United 21 States Marshal. (Cert. of Serv. (Dkt. # 5) at 2, 4.) Amazon omits from its petition any 22 ORDER - 2 1 discussion of whether and on what basis service by a special process server comports 2 with Section 9’s service requirement for a nonresident adverse party. (See generally 3 Pet.); see also 9 U.S.C. § 9. Accordingly, the court DEFERS ruling on Amazon’s 4 petition (Dkt. # 1) and DIRECTS Amazon to submit supplemental briefing on whether 5 the service it effectuated comports with 9 U.S.C. § 9.1 Amazon’s supplemental brief 6 shall not exceed four (4) pages and must be filed no later than Thursday, August 3, 2017. 7 Dated this 26th day of July, 2017. 8 9 A 10 JAMES L. ROBART United States District Judge 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 1 22 In the alternative, Amazon may submit a motion for service by the United States Marshal. ORDER - 3

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