A treatment agreement between a doctor and patient, both California residents, involved interstate commerce and thus was governed by the FAA. There was no need to show that interstate commerce was involved in the transaction with the particular patient. It sufficed that similar doctor-patient agreements did—20% of the doctor’s medical supplies came from out-of-state as well as 5% of his patients. The FAA preempted CCP 1295(c) which denies effect to arbitration clauses in doctor-patient agreements unless the patient is allowed to disaffirm the arbitration clause within 30 days after signing it. Here, the patient died less than 30 days after signing the arbitration clause. A portion of the arbitration clause which chose the LA Superior Court as the forum for “any court involvement that might be necessary for arbitration or any legal action that enters the courts” did not waive the arbitration clause or the application of the FAA to that clause. Rodriguez v. Superior Court (2009) 176 Cal.App.4th 1461 did not require a different result as it did not consider whether the FAA preempted CCP 1295(c).
California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 5 (Turner, P.J.); June 22, 2016; 2016 WL 3439739