Fairmont Ins. Brokers. v. Schwab
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Justice David Schmidt
Fairmont Insurance Brokers moved to confirm an arbitration award issued by the Rabbinical Court (Beth Din) against Schwab, and others. Fairmont entered into agreements with Schwab and Freilich. As a result of alleged breaches, Fairmont sued Schwab and Freilich. The parties agreed to arbitration, and it was determined respondents owed Fairmont over $100,000. Respondents claimed they attempted to negotiate a payment schedule, but Fairmont refused to appear before the Beth Din. They now claimed the ruling was not final as it did not include a structured payment plan. The court noted the Beth Din's reservation of jurisdiction to resolve disputes relating to its ruling did not deprive the award of its finality for CPLR 7511 purposes. It ruled the award comprehensively determined the parties' rights and obligations, noting it was not lacking in finality regardless of whether the Beth Din continued to retain jurisdiction. The court stated the Beth Din's retention of jurisdiction to clarify rulings did not make the award indefinite and not-final for purposes of §7511. Also, it noted the alleged "integral part of the award" was not referenced in the ruling or referenced as a subject of the parties' dispute, hence, Fairmont's petition was granted.