Faculty in the News
Sarah Rudolph Cole Media Hits
The following is a list of selected media coverage for Sarah Rudolph Cole. The links below will direct you to sites that are not affiliated with the Moritz College of Law. They are subject to change, and some may expire or require registration as time passes.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in The Columbus Dispatch about the use of arbitration to reinstate employees, particularly police officers. Since 2014, the police union of the Columbus Division of Police officers has won seven out of eight cases that have gone to binding, third-party arbitration. It is difficult to terminate employees in unionized work environments, Cole said, as focus is placed on letting employees learn from their mistakes.
“This comes up periodically. And in fairness, the public looks at this as, ‘This is a terrible guy. Why can’t you get rid of him?’” Cole said.
Professor Sarah Cole was mentioned in article by The Toledo Blade detailing how leaders from Toledo, Ohio and eight other neighboring communities are considering hiring a mediator to help form a regional water authority.
Local representatives have spent months debating how to equalize water rates and how to include input from the eight other communities that depend on the Collins Park Water Treatment Plant (owned by the city of Toledo). Officials are also concerned about the safety of the plant following a 2014 incident in which toxic algae rendered water from the plant unfit to drink.
Cole is being considered as a possible mediator.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a Columbus Dispatch article on why consumers are giving up their right to go to court if they have a dispute with a company.
She told the Dispatch that class-action lawsuits often start when a consumer notices, for example, an illegitimate fee that has been added to a credit-card bill.
“Lots of people don’t know about the fee, and they are losing a lot of money,” she said.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a Columbus Dispatch article on the use of mediation to end the teacher's strike in Reynoldsburg.
While the court’s jurisdiction is limited to the dispute before it, the parties can talk about other issues during mediation, said Sarah Cole, a professor at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law. She also directs the college’s program on dispute resolution.
“The judge wouldn’t have power to compel the union to participate in mediation,” she said. “The union willingly went along. It makes you wonder if they are just talking about the safety issue or the larger concern about the strike.”
“Maybe that’s what they are hoping,” Cole said. “The lawsuit is a way to get them to talk together.”
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a This Week newspaper article on the use of mediation in the Reynoldsburg School District teacher's strike.
According to Sarah Cole, a professor at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law, the judge Holbrook does not have the power or jurisdiction to force mediation on the teachers’ contract, only the safety issue. However, she said ordering the two sides to discuss safety is a way to get both sides talking again.
Professor Sarah Rudolph Cole's abstract for her paper "The Federalization of Consumer Arbitration: Possible Solutions" was featured on Mediate.com. The paper focuses on how arbitration law has been interpreted by the Supreme Court and how that has affected the the role of the state.
"While state legislatures traditionally regulate contract law issues, the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the FAA has resulted in an anomalous situation in which federal law routinely trumps state laws attempting to reform arbitration," she writes.
Professor Sarah Rudolph Cole spoke with CTV News about the role parents may have played in the Steubenville rape case and how Ohio laws would affect them.
Professor Sarah Rudolph Cole was quoted in an article in The Atlantic Wire regarding the role of parents in the Steubenville rape case. Sarah Rudolph Cole told The Atlantic Wire Monday that the "bottom line is that you can be sued for these things, but liability will likely turn on whether it was foreseeable that a drunken minor would, more likely than not, cause physical harm to another person."
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an article in the Columbus Dispatch about a case in which the prosecutor settled after being left paralyzed after a crash involving a pothole in the city. “Parties settle for a variety of reasons, not necessarily just for exposure, but (for) the condition of the plaintiff and uncertainty of the outcome,” said Sarah Cole, a law professor at Ohio State University and a nationally known expert in case mediation. “But I wouldn’t think this (sets legal precedent) for cities.”
Professor Sarah Cole was referred to in an article by The Columbus Dispatch.
The article, which was about two sexual assault lawsuits against Franklin County Environmental Judge Harland H. Hale being resolved, noted Cole began the mediation process April 27 and she “invested significant time and effort as a volunteer mediator and deserves credit for resolving (both cases).”
Professor Sarah Cole was mentioned in The Columbus Dispatch in an article about Common Pleas Judge Richard A. Frye ordering the parties in three lawsuits to take the mediation process seriously. The lawsuits involve Franklin County Environmental Court Judge Harland H. Hale, and Frye admonished attorneys on both sides for being overly combative before ordering them to work with Cole, director of the Moritz’s Program on Dispute Resolution.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a USA Today article regarding the Minnesota lawsuit against the National Arbitration Forum. The story states: "The timing of the case 'could not be better' for supporters of arbitration reform, says Sarah Cole, an Ohio State University law professor."
Professor Sarah Cole was mentioned in a Columbus Dispatch column about possible litigation stemming from residents shoveling their sidewalks. The story states: “But that belief is mistaken unless, by clearing the snow, you ‘worsen the condition or create an appearance of safety’ that doesn't exist, said Sarah Cole, a professor at Ohio State University's Moritz College of Law. Cole said the bottom line is: ‘Did you do something special to screw it up?’”
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an ADRWorld.com story about an Ohio Appeals Court ruling on arbitration. The story says: “Professor Sarah Cole of the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law said the law on waiver of the right to arbitrate ‘is all over the map,’ with some courts applying a presumption against waiver, while others do not. Cole noted that the party arguing that there has been a waiver in this case is the one who put the arbitration provision in the form contract.”
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an ADRWorld.com story regarding parties’ consent to arbitrate employment discrimination claims. The story stated: "It would be a harsh result to require Cercone, who is not obligated to arbitrate employment discrimination claims unless he explicitly agrees to do so, to have to file with FINRA and pay filing fees for his discrimination claim because his assertion of the discrimination claim in arbitration over the loan repayment amounted to a waiver of his right to bring his employment claim in court," she said. "I think that a lot of unknowing employees would fall victim to this practice if courts enforced it."
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a story published in the May 2008 edition of Alternatives regarding a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Hall Street Associates L.L.C. V. Mattel Inc. “I think Hall Street Associates will discourage parties from seeking expanded judicial review of arbitration awards. A party who really wants expanded judicial review of an arbitration award may contract for it and then hope that the courts will allow a declaratory judgment to determine whether legal error occurred. Although the party can’t get the expedited review the FAA provides, assuming there is a transcript and/or an opinion from the arbitration case, a judge should be able to determine whether the arbitrator committed legal error.”
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an ADRWorld.com story about an Ohio appeals court decision regarding a financial advisor who was refusing to arbitrate most claims against his former employer. The story stated: “Professor Sarah Cole of the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law said of the decision, ‘I am glad to see that the court did not elevate form over substance when it found that [the brokerage employee] was required to arbitrate. Any other result would encourage brokers to avoid checking boxes, which is a ministerial activity, in order to avoid arbitration.’”
Professor Cole was mentioned in a story on ADRWorld.com. The story discussed the Supreme Court’s decision to answer the question of whether an arbitration clause in a collective bargaining agreement can waive the rights of union members to bring statutory claims in court. The story states: “Sarah Cole, a law professor at Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, predicted that the court would overturn Gardner-Denver and enforce the clear and unmistakable waiver in the CBA in Pyett.”
Professor Sarah Cole was quote in the February/April edition of the Dispute Resolution Journal. The story was about the U.S. Supreme Court hearing arguments over a preemption issue involving a California state agency. The story stated: â€œProf. Sara Cole of Ohio State Universityâ€™s Moritz College of Law suggested that the Courtâ€™s concern with the length of the Labor Commissionerâ€™s adjudication and subsequent de novo appeal could indicate that the Court is leaning toward finding preemption in this case.â€
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an ADRWorld.com story regarding the Supreme Court’s clarification that the Federal Arbitration Act supercedes state laws. The story states: “Ohio State University Moritz College of Law Professor Sarah Cole predicted after oral argument that the Court would reach this result. (See ADRWorld.com: Supreme Court Hears FAA Preemption Argument in California Case , 1/15/2008). Explaining the Court's decision, Cole said that allowing the Labor Commissioner to address the dispute interferes with the parties' ability to enforce their arbitration agreement, a result the FAA does not permit.”
Professor Sarah Cole was mentioned in an ADRWorld.com story about the U.S. Supreme Court questioning whether a California licensing law that grants the state’s Labor Commissioner jurisdiction over talent agency disputes is preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. The story states: “Sarah Cole of Ohio State University's Moritz College of Law said that this case will clarify the application of FAA preemption in the context of conflicting administrative proceedings.” (Subscription required.)
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a story on ADRWorld.com regarding an Ohio court’s ruling in a pre-dispute arbitration agreement. The story stated: “Ohio State University Moritz College of Law Professor Sarah Cole called the court's decision ‘a stunning outcome.’ ‘I am surprised to see that the court held that a standard arbitration clause in a consumer contract is unenforceable on both substantive and procedural unconscionability grounds,’ she added.”
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a story on law360.com regarding the Supreme Court’s request for supplemental briefs in the case of Hall Street Associates v. Mattell. The story says that because the justices made the request, and specifically how the request was worded, could indicate that the court may sidestep the matter completely. The story states: “‘Parties are more creative than they used to be and that’s pushing the court system to decide what’s acceptable and what’s not acceptable,” said Sarah Cole, a law professor at Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University. (Subscription required)
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a National Law Journal story regarding the U.S. Supreme Court’s upcoming case involving the Federal Arbitration Act, and whether the act allows parties to expand judicial review of an arbitration decision beyond the terms of a statute. The story states: “But the main motivation of the drafters of the FAA was ‘to ensure enforcement of the parties’ agreement as written,’ said Sarah Rudolph Cole, director of the Program on Dispute Resolution at Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law. ‘I think the drafters would say, 'If that's what the parties want to do, we should enforce the contract as written,’ ’ she said, adding that companies, particularly those with much at stake, may refuse to use arbitration if there is no provision in the agreement providing for this type of judicial review.” Subscription required.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in an adrworld.com story regarding the Ohio Supreme Court’s ruling that a wrongful death claim is not subject to arbitration. The story says: “Prof. Sarah Cole of the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law said ‘the court correctly examined Ohio's wrongful death statute to see whether it makes the spouse, or other heir's, claims derivative of the employee's claim.’ The court explained that state law makes those claims independent rather than derivative, she noted. ‘In other words, a spouse's independent and direct claim for wrongful death is not subject to a contract that the party did not sign,’ she added.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a story on ADRWorld.com regarding a Washington Supreme Court decision. The court decided to not grant a class action waiver to Cingular, which would have restricted the ability of customers to bring a claim under the state consumer protection law and effectively shielded Cingular from liability for allegedly overcharging for cell phone services. The story stated: “Ohio State University Moritz College of Law Professor Sarah Cole called the ruling a ‘big victory for consumers.’ Because of the FAA’s broad preemptive power, state law does not usually matter, she explained. ‘But here it did because the case deals with consumer protection,’ Cole said.” Subscription required.
Professor Sarah Cole was quoted in a story on ADRWorld.com regarding the Supreme Court’s decision to hear arguments on whether courts are authorized to enforce an arbitration agreement that expands the grounds for judicial review of an award beyond those provided for in the Federal Arbitration Act. The story said: “Ohio State University Moritz College of Law Professor Sarah Cole said the Supreme Court's decision to review the question of the enforceability of clauses expanding judicial review is ‘very exciting’ since that is ‘one of the most interesting issues in arbitration law [today].’” Subscription required.
In an article on ADRWorld.com about the Ohio Supreme Court's decision to adopt the test used by the federal bench for determining whether claims can be arbitrated, giving state trials courts the ability to look at the specific facts of a case, not just the law, when deciding to send a case to arbitration or litigation, Professor Sarah Cole said the arbitration agreement at the center of the case was indeed "very broad," and the court interpreted Fazio to cover the "plaintiff's dispute only if the dispute cannot be adjudicated without reference to the parties' underlying contract."
An article on ADRWorld.com addressed the Ohio appeals court's decision to free relatives of workers killed on the job to take action in court even if the decedent signed an arbitration agreement covering all employment claims, ruling that wrongful death suits are independent actions under state law. According to Professor Sarah Cole, the ruling makes sense from a public policy perspective because a wrongful death action is brought by a survivor to remedy losses suffered as a result of the death, not to recover monies owed the decedent.
In a Columbus Dispatch story about divorcing couples using collaborative law to keep negotiations out of court, Professor Christopher Fairman said that there is almost a cult like fervor among people who have used collaborative law. Professor Sarah Cole said that as long as the rules and process are spelled out for clients, there should be no problems.