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Hudson Wholesale Grocery Co. v. Allied Trades Council of American Federation of Labor

Decided: April 11, 1949.

HUDSON WHOLESALE GROCERY COMPANY, A CORPORATION OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF,
v.
ALLIED TRADES COUNCIL OF THE AMERICAN FEDERATION OF LABOR, DEFENDANT



Civil Action.

Kays, J.s.c.

Kays

This is a motion by the defendant to dismiss the complaint filed in this cause upon the following grounds:

(1) The complaint fails to set forth a cause of action.

(2) This court has no jurisdiction in that the sole remedy is arbitration.

(3) An adequate remedy at law exists; to wit, arbitration.

(4) Res adjudicata , in that the Hudson County Circuit Court has heretofore rendered a decision that the matter proceed to arbitration.

In the event of a denial of the foregoing, the defendant moves for a stay of these proceedings until after arbitration, in accordance with R.S. 2:40-14.

The complaint herein seeks rescission of an employer-employee agreement entered into between the parties on December 20, 1946, on the grounds of fraud and duress in the making of the agreement. The complaint also seeks an injunction against the defendant from proceeding with arbitration in accordance with the arbitration provisions of the agreement. The plaintiff's alleged right to the injunction is predicated upon the defendant's action through its members, the plaintiff's employees, in repudiating the contract by violating the "no-strike clause" thereof. The plaintiff contends that such action on the part of the defendant so materially breached the contract that said defendant cannot now rely on the arbitration provisions therein contained and that the plaintiff upon such breach was entitled to and did terminate the agreement.

The issue of fraud and duress in the making of the agreement has already been decided against the plaintiff.

There is no question as to the propriety of the present motion. It is addressed to the jurisdiction of the court. See Rule 3:12-8; McGarvey v. Young , 100 N.J. Eq. 174, 176; affirmed, 101 N.J. Eq. 302. At the time that the previous motion was decided by Vice-Chancellor Egan, the issues of fraud and duress in the making of the agreement were undetermined. As stated, these issues have now been decided against the plaintiff.

Prior to the institution of this suit, the defendant herein petitioned the Circuit Court for an order to compel arbitration pursuant to R.S. 2:40-12 et seq. Judge ...


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