Supreme Court clarifies time in which motion to vacate arbitration award must be served.
An arbitrator appointed to settle a dispute over the termination of a teacher found that the termination was appropriate. The decision was emailed on December 10. On March 10 of the following year, the teacher moved in the court of common pleas to vacate the award. The clerk sent a copy of the motion to the school board on the same day, and on the following day, March 11, the teacher sent another copy of the motion to the board. The trial court dismissed the action for want of jurisdiction because the statute requires “[n]otice of a motion to vacate . . . an award must be served upon the adverse party or his attorney within three months after the award is delivered to the parties in interest, as prescribed by law for service of notice of a motion in an action.” R.C. 2711.13. The trial court agreed with the board that “notice” was not received within three months and so dismissed the case. The District Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court both disagreed, holding that the statute requires notice to be served within three months. The clerk’s sending of the motion via certified mail on March 10 was within three months of December 10, and so service was proper. Moreover, the usual method of calculating days for service—as expressly referenced in the statute—excludes the first day of the period. And so the Supreme Court concluded that the three-month clock began on December 11, making the teacher’s mailing of the motion again on March 11 timely.
Case Law Alerts, 4th Quarter, October 2016. Case Law Alerts is prepared by Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin to provide information on recent developments of interest to our readers. This publication is not intended to provide legal advice for a specific situation or to create an attorney-client relationship. Copyright © 2016 Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, all rights reserved. This article may not be reprinted without the express written permission of our firm.