Business

Appeals court sides with employers on arbitration

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WASHINGTON — Employers can require their workers to sign arbitration agreements waiving all rights to class-action lawsuits over workplace grievances, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday.

The ruling from the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals overturns a National Labor Relations Board decision last year that found such agreements conflicted with federal law giving workers the right to pursue collective action to complain about workplace conditions.

The court’s ruling is a win for businesses that want to limit legal exposure from the rising cost of class-action lawsuits over unpaid overtime and other wage violations. But it’s a blow to workers who find it easier to band together when challenging the policies at a large company.

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