9. On her first day of employment, Rosner was required to fill out paperwork, including an arbitration agreement with her employer at the time, relating to her temporary employment.10. Rosner was also advised that, in the future, there may be a full time position that becomes available.11. After working at Forester for approximately two months, Rosner applied for and was ultimately hired into a full time position at Forester. This position was wholly separate from the temp position that she had been working in, through a staffing agency, and was accompanied with additional duties, responsibilities, salary, and benefits.12. Rosner began working full time for Foresters on or about January 4, 2016. At this time, she was not required to sign an arbitration provision for this new position for which she was hired.13. Rosner was hired as the Executive Assistant to the Chief Compliance Officer and the Chief Legal and Regulatory Officer (General Counsel) and was also expected to support the Board of Directors of the First Investors Fund.14. Upon beginning her full time employment, Rosner requested a letter from Human Resources delineating the terms of her employment, including her title, compensation, benefits, and duties and responsibilities. On numerous occasions, Rosner was given excuses as to why such a letter could not be provided at that time. Her similarly situated coworkers, who hold similar positions and are outside her protected class(es), have received such a letter and, upon information and belief, were compensated at a higher rate than Rosner, even where they were hired subsequent to her.15. Moreover, shortly into her tenure, Rosner noticed that her job duties were being reduced, with her being relegated largely to clerical functions such as copying and filing, while her similarly situated coworkers, outside of her protected class(es) are assigned more significant work.16. In addition, Rosner identified a disparity in how black employees are treated versus Caucasian employees, included in seating assignments and grouping, as well as in the level of work that was assigned, with one example being that a Caucasian intern was consistently assigned to participate in meetings and more meaningful projects, while Rosner, as a full time employee, was relegated to copying.
[T]his position was not obtained through the staffing agency and was wholly different and separate from the temporary position that she was working in previously, through the staffing agency. This position was also not simply a continuation of her prior temp work, but in a more full timer role. Rather, Rosner applied for, and was hired, for a job that was separate and independent from her prior temp work. . . .
[P]ursuant to the arbitration agreement at issue, any arbitration, in the first instance, is to proceed through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA"), Howeer, neither Rosner nor Defendant is governed by FINRA. Rosner has never been a member of FINRA. According to FINRA's own website, Defendant is also not regulated by FINRA . . .
Defendant Foresters Financial Holding Company, Inc. ("Foresters") moves to compel Plaintiff Nordia Rosner to arbitrate her claims of employment discrimination. In a brief essentially devoid of any legal analysis or citations, Plaintiff's counsel claims the parties' arbitration agreement is inapplicable or void. For the reasons discussed below, the Court STAYS this action and GRANTS Defendant's motion to compel arbitration
In this case, there is no dispute that Plaintiff signed an arbitration agreement with Foresters Financial, or that the agreement covers the types of employment discrimination claims alleged in the Amended Complaint. See Pl. Br. (Dkt. 25) at 2-4; Gold v. Deutsche Aktiengesellschaft, 365 F.3d 144, 149 (2d Cir. 2004) ("[I]n the absence of fraud or other wrongful act on the part of another contracting party, a party 'who signs or accepts a written contract . . . is conclusively presumed to know its contents and to assent to them.'" (quoting Metzger v. Aetna Ins. Co., 227 N.Y. 411, 416 (1920))). Courts in this circuit have also consistently compelled arbitration pursuant to arbitration clauses containing language similar to that in the Agreement. See, e.g., Bellevue v. Exxon Mobile Corp., No. 19-CV-652, 2019 WL 1459041, at *2 (E.D.N.Y. Apr. 2, 2019); Falcone Bros. P'ship v. Bear Stearns & Co., 699 F. Supp. 32, 35 (S.D.N.Y. 1988); Fleming v. J. Crew, No. 16-CV-2663, 2016 WL 6208570, at *1 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 21, 2016); Moss v. Rent-A-Ctr., Inc., No. 06-CV-3312, 2007 WL 2362207, at *1 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 15, 2007); see also McAllister v. Connecticut Renaissance Inc., 496 Fed. App'x 104, 106 (2d Cir. 2012).Plaintiff primarily argues that her claims are beyond the scope of the Agreement because they arose out of her full-time employment, not the temporary position for which she was hired when she signed the Agreement. See Pl. Br. at 2-4. The fact that Plaintiff did not sign a separate arbitration agreement when she began her full-time position is immaterial because the Agreement does not contain a temporal or job-specific limitation. See Moss, 2007 WL 2362207, at *8 ("Broadly phrased arbitration agreements create a presumption of arbitrability which is only overcome if the arbitration agreement is not susceptible to an interpretation that covers the dispute." (citing Bank Julius Baer & Co. v. Waxfield Ltd., 424 F.3d 278, 284 (2d Cir. 2005))). Rather, the Agreement unambiguously extends to all claims "past, present, or future," between Plaintiff and the Company and its affiliates, "whether or not" those claims "ar[ise] out of [Plaintiff's] association" with Foresters Financial. Agreement at 1. Because of the breadth of that contractual language, a subsequent agreement would have been redundant.Plaintiff otherwise argues that the Agreement should not apply because neither party is an entity regulated by FINRA, making FINRA an inappropriate arbitral forum.1 See Pl. Br. at 4. The Agreement, however, has anticipated the possibility that FINRA may not be available to arbitrate a dispute. In such cases, the Agreement requires the parties to arbitrate through JAMS-which Plaintiff does not contend would be in any way improper. See Agreement at 2. Thus, Plaintiff's argument as to FINRA is simply irrelevant to Foresters' motion, which does not seek to seek to compel arbitration before FINRA specifically. . . .= = = = =Footnote 1: Plaintiff also contends that Defendant's Employee Handbook, which is separate from the Agreement, is an illusory contract that is not binding on Plaintiff. See Pl. Br. at 3. The Court declines to rule on the significance, if any, of the Handbook because Plaintiff is obligated to arbitrate pursuant to the terms of the Agreement alone.