Vergara v. Nintendo

No. 19 C 6374, 2020 U.S. Dist. Lexis 89412 (2020)

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Vergara v. Nintendo

N.D. Ill
No. 19 C 6374, 2020 U.S. Dist. Lexis 89412 (2020)

Facts

Zachary Vergara (plaintiff) bought a videogame and controllers from Nintendo of America, Inc. (Nintendo) (defendant) that he later said were defective. Prior to making the purchase, Vergara signed an end-user license agreement (EULA) with Nintendo. The agreement required that all disputes and claims arising from the purchase be settled in binding arbitration, except for claims that could be brought in small-claims court. The EULA also incorporated American Arbitration Association (AAA) rules that expressly delegated to the arbitrator the parties’ disputes concerning arbitrability of any claim. Vergara sued Nintendo in the Circuit Court of Cook County alleging various state-law torts. Nintendo moved to compel arbitration. Vergara opposed, arguing that his claims fell within those that could be brought in small-claims court under the EULA. Nintendo countered by arguing it was for the arbitrator, not the court, to interpret the EULA and whether Vergara’s claims must be arbitrated, citing the AAA rules on the issue. Vergara did not respond to Nintendo’s invocation of the AAA rules. The circuit court granted the motion to compel arbitration with leave for Vergara to pursue his claims in court if the arbitrator found the claims were not arbitrable.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Feinerman, J.)

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