However, the Spanish-translated version of the treaty omitted the compromise clause contained in the English version. Ramos then went on to sue Westlake, claiming that an optional insurance he had purchased with the automobile was contrary to California`s unfair competition laws. Westlake moved to force Ramos` appeal on the basis of the compromise clause. After being dismissed, Valenzuela filed a complaint against Delfingen for unlawful dismissal. Delfingen then filed an application to impose an arbitration procedure on the basis of the agreement signed by Valenzuela during the course of the orientation. Valenzuela argued against conciliation, saying that the agreement was „procedurally unacceptable“ and that it was in a hurry to sign the agreement, although it was written in English. She also said that the agreement had not been fully explained to her. Delfingen contradicted Valenzuela`s assertions and argued that his inability to read English does not invalidate the agreement. After a hearing of evidence, the District Court found that Delfingen Valenzuela did not explain the agreement and rejected Delfingen`s request for mediation. The company then filed an appeal. In Esteban H. Carmona et al. v.
Lincoln Millennium Car Wash Inc. et al. (Case Number B248143, State of California, Second Appellate District, Division Eight) sued current and former employees Esteban H. Carmona, Marcial H. Carmona, Pedro Cruz and Yoel Isail Matute Casco Lincoln Millennium Car Wash Inc. and Silver Wash Inc. Their employers tried to force arbitration. The court found that the arbitration agreement was at issue in the case, was unacceptable and refused to apply it and found that the car wash companies translated only parts of the agreement into Spanish and failed to explain it in depth.
In determining whether the agreement was materially unacceptable, the Tribunal examined the degree of reciprocity of the agreement. The court found that the agreement lacked reciprocity on the basis of: 1) the enforceable force clause allowed employers to take legal action, but limited the worker to arbitration; 2) the same enforceable force clause also contained the presumption that a breach of the confidentiality provision of the agreement would result in immediate and unaffordable harm to employers, but did not contain a parallel presumption in favour of workers; 3) the enforceable force clause allows employers to recover legal fees and fees, but has not given workers the same right; and 4) the arbitration clause required employees to discuss disputes with management before disclosing information to third parties, giving employers „free access“ to issues they may face in arbitration proceedings. THE MORAL OF THE STORY? If you have Spanish-speaking collaborators, make sure that the translated versions of all the agreements they sign are available to them to thwart all arguments about the reliability of the procedure. The California Court of Appeals ruled that a dealer who translated a sales contract into Spanish but did not include the compromise clause in the translated agreement could not enforce the arbitration agreement. Ramos v. Westlake Services, LLC, A141353. Although it is a commercial transaction, it has a significant impact on employers who apply arbitration agreements with workers whose main language is not English. On the other hand, in a case dealing with a similar issue and which was decided by another court of appeal, the court found that an arbitration agreement was enforceable when a Spanish version of the agreement was made available to workers by their employer.