802 F.2d 247 (7th Cir. 1986), 85-3136, Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. International Ass'n of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Dist. No. 8

Docket Nº85-3136, and 85-3155.
Citation802 F.2d 247
Party Name5 Fed.R.Serv.3d 793 DREIS & KRUMP MANUFACTURING COMPANY, Plaintiff-Counterdefendant-Appellant- Cross-Appellee, v. INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MACHINISTS AND AEROSPACE WORKERS, DISTRICT NO. 8, Defendant-Counterplaintiff-Appellee- Cross-Appellant.
Case DateSeptember 22, 1986
CourtUnited States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Page 247

802 F.2d 247 (7th Cir. 1986)

5 Fed.R.Serv.3d 793

DREIS & KRUMP MANUFACTURING COMPANY,

Plaintiff-Counterdefendant-Appellant- Cross-Appellee,

v.

INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MACHINISTS AND AEROSPACE

WORKERS, DISTRICT NO. 8,

Defendant-Counterplaintiff-Appellee-

Cross-Appellant.

Nos. 85-3136, and 85-3155.

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

September 22, 1986

Argued June 13, 1986.

Page 248

[Copyrighted Material Omitted]

Page 249

John A. McDonald, Keck Mahin & Cate, Chicago, Ill., for Dreis & Krump.

David Mathews, Carmel Charone Widmer & Mathews, Chicago, Ill., for Intern. Assoc. of Machinists.

Before CUMMINGS, Chief Judge, POSNER, Circuit Judge, and GORDON, Senior District Judge. [*]

POSNER, Circuit Judge.

Dreis & Krump, a manufacturer of industrial equipment, appeals from a judgment dismissing on summary judgment its suit (brought under section 301 of the Taft-Hartley Act, 29 U.S.C. Sec. 185) to set aside an arbitrator's award to the machinists union. The union cross-appeals from the court's refusal to award it attorney's fees under Fed.R.Civ.P. 11, and also requests attorney's fees for defending the appeal.

The company and the union were the parties to a collective bargaining agreement, dated October 1, 1981, which contained a provision for arbitration of disputes arising under the agreement. The company had financial problems and in 1982 laid off a welder named Larry Crawford. A few months later the company decided as a cost-saving measure that rather than recall Crawford it would subcontract the welding work that he had been doing. In March 1983 the union filed a grievance on Crawford's behalf. The grievance was referred to an arbitrator, who on April 30, 1984, found that the subcontracting of Crawford's work was a breach of the collective bargaining agreement. The arbitrator ordered the company to stop subcontracting welding as long as its welders were laid off, to recall Crawford, and to make him whole for the wages and benefits that he had lost as a result of the breach, "the amount thereof to be determined by the parties after a joint review of Company records." The order provided that "the Arbitrator will retain jurisdiction for 90 days to resolve any remaining or unforeseen issues as to relief." The company did not comply with the arbitrator's order. Instead, on June 11, 1984, it asked the arbitrator to reconsider the order; this request was denied on September 5. After the union refused to accept the company's tender of seven weeks' backpay to Crawford, the company filed this suit on February 8, 1985.

The timetable suggests something profoundly wrong about this litigation. Labor arbitration is supposed to be a speedy and efficacious remedy for disputes arising out of the administration of collective bargaining agreements. Yet almost three and a half years have passed since the union filed its grievance on behalf of Crawford, and the grievance is still unresolved. It should have been resolved more than two years ago, when the arbitrator issued his decision. The company had no ground for challenging the decision in court; also, it filed this suit after the statute of limitations had run.

The statute of limitations that applies to a suit brought in Illinois under section 301 of the Taft-Hartley Act to set aside an arbitrator's award is 90 days. Plumbers' Pension Fund, Local 130 v. Domas Mechanical Contractors, Inc., 778 F.2d 1266 (7th Cir.1985). The present suit was filed nine months after the arbitrator made his award. The company argues that the statute did not begin to run till the ninety-first day after the award, because the arbitrator expressly reserved jurisdiction till then, and in any event was tolled while the company's request for reconsideration was under advisement. Even if these arguments are correct, they do not bring the suit within the 90-day limit. The company's request for reconsideration was

Page 250

turned down on September 5, 1984, yet it did not file this suit till February 8, five months later. The only way the suit could be timely would be if the company's further argument, that when the arbitrator denied the request for reconsideration he implicitly reserved jurisdiction for another 90 days, were accepted; but it is an absurd argument.

There is more wrong with the company's position on timeliness than arithmetic. A reservation of jurisdiction--which is implicit in any order that grants equitable relief (as this one did, in ordering Dreis & Krump to recall Crawford and stop subcontracting), but not in an order that merely refuses to reconsider a previous order--would not extend the time for appeal. See University Life Ins. Co. v. Unimarc Ltd., 699 F.2d 846, 849-50 (7th Cir.1983); 9 Moore's Federal Practice p 110.08 at p. 118 (1985). And while a suit to set aside an arbitrator's award is not an appeal, it is like an appeal; that is one reason for the very short statute of limitations for bringing such suits. Therefore the arbitrator's reservation of jurisdiction for 90 days--not to mention any supposed implicit reservation for another 90 days after the arbitrator denied the request to reconsider his award--did not suspend the statute of limitations for filing suit to set aside the award.

It is not even clear that the company's request for reconsideration suspended the statute of limitations. Continuing with the analogy to an appeal, we point out that Rule 4(a)(4) of the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure delays the time for appealing if the appellant files a motion to reconsider (see Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e)) within 10 days after judgment was rendered. There is no counterpart provision for arbitral proceedings. Although section 9 of the Uniform Arbitration Act, Ill.Rev.Stat. ch. 10, p 109, allows 20 days to file a request with the arbitrator to change an award, the grounds are limited to clerical and other formal errors in the award. Compare p 109 with p 113(a)(1) and (3). And the idea that an arbitrator might have an inherent power to modify his award is made problematic by the ad hoc status of most arbitrators, compared to courts and administrative agencies. See Elkouri & Elkouri, How Arbitration Works 283-85 (4th ed. 1985). The arbitrator renders his award, then quits. What power can he retain to reconsider his award after quitting? If a judge resigns his office, he can't be asked to reconsider his rulings. A further point is that if the parties to arbitration can badger the arbitrator to reconsider his award for some indefinite time after he has made it, the speed and finality of arbitration are impaired.

Yet where as in the present case the arbitrator does not quit immediately but retains jurisdiction to make sure his award is complied with, maybe this empowers him to consider requests for reconsideration filed before he does quit. If so, a request filed within that...

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140 practice notes
  • 656 F.Supp. 1138 (N.D.Ill. 1987), 85 C 10006, Alcan Aluminum Corp. v. Lyntel Products, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 7th Circuit Northern District of Illinois
    • March 27, 1987
    ...to impose sanctions to discourage groundless litigation. See e.g., Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. International Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247 (7th Cir.1986); Thornton v. Wahl, 787 F.2d 1151 (7th Cir.1986); In re TCI Ltd., 769 F.2d 441 (7th Cir.1985). It has imposed sanctions on its own m......
  • 82 B.R. 943 (Bkrtcy.N.D.Ill. 1988), 87 B 9691, In re Chicago Midwest Donut, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Bankruptcy Courts Seventh Circuit
    • January 8, 1988
    ...is an objective question of reasonableness under the circumstances. Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. International Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). See also Brown, 800 F.2d at 171; Thornton v. Wahl, 787 F.2d 1151, 1154 (7th Cir.), cert. denied, 479 U.S. 851, 107 S.Ct. 181......
  • 821 F.2d 390 (7th Cir. 1987), 85-2464, Chicago Newspaper Publishers' Ass'n v. Chicago Web Printing Pressmen's Union No. 7
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
    • June 1, 1987
    ...See also Dreis & Krump Manufacturing Company v. International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, District No. 8, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). In Miller Brewing Co. v. Brewing Workers Local Union No. 9, AFL-CIO, 739 F.2d 1159, 1167 (7th Cir.1984), we stated that "......
  • 827 F.2d 101 (7th Cir. 1987), 86-1469, Hagge v. Bauer
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
    • August 17, 1987
    ...an award of reasonable attorney fees as a sanction for a frivolous appeal. See, e.g., Dreis & Krump Mfg. v. Int'l Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). But, here, we do believe the appellants have raised an actual plausibility issue. The pertinent factual sequence, as f......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
137 cases
  • 656 F.Supp. 1138 (N.D.Ill. 1987), 85 C 10006, Alcan Aluminum Corp. v. Lyntel Products, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States District Courts 7th Circuit Northern District of Illinois
    • March 27, 1987
    ...to impose sanctions to discourage groundless litigation. See e.g., Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. International Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247 (7th Cir.1986); Thornton v. Wahl, 787 F.2d 1151 (7th Cir.1986); In re TCI Ltd., 769 F.2d 441 (7th Cir.1985). It has imposed sanctions on its own m......
  • 82 B.R. 943 (Bkrtcy.N.D.Ill. 1988), 87 B 9691, In re Chicago Midwest Donut, Inc.
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Bankruptcy Courts Seventh Circuit
    • January 8, 1988
    ...is an objective question of reasonableness under the circumstances. Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. International Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). See also Brown, 800 F.2d at 171; Thornton v. Wahl, 787 F.2d 1151, 1154 (7th Cir.), cert. denied, 479 U.S. 851, 107 S.Ct. 181......
  • 821 F.2d 390 (7th Cir. 1987), 85-2464, Chicago Newspaper Publishers' Ass'n v. Chicago Web Printing Pressmen's Union No. 7
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
    • June 1, 1987
    ...See also Dreis & Krump Manufacturing Company v. International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, District No. 8, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). In Miller Brewing Co. v. Brewing Workers Local Union No. 9, AFL-CIO, 739 F.2d 1159, 1167 (7th Cir.1984), we stated that "......
  • 827 F.2d 101 (7th Cir. 1987), 86-1469, Hagge v. Bauer
    • United States
    • Federal Cases United States Courts of Appeals Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
    • August 17, 1987
    ...an award of reasonable attorney fees as a sanction for a frivolous appeal. See, e.g., Dreis & Krump Mfg. v. Int'l Ass'n of Machinists, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir.1986). But, here, we do believe the appellants have raised an actual plausibility issue. The pertinent factual sequence, as f......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 firm's commentaries
  • 11th Circuit Ruling Strenuously Protects Arbitration Pacts
    • United States
    • JD Supra United States
    • October 21, 2019
    ...556 (7th Cir. 2006) [10] Id. at 561 (citing Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. Int'l Ass'n of Machinists & Aerospace Workers , Dist. No. 8, 802 F.2d 247, 255-56 (7th Cir. [11] Id. Jose M. FerrerAnthony Sirven...
2 books & journal articles
  • As the Enterprise Wheel turns: new evidence on the finality of labor arbitration awards.
    • United States
    • Stanford Law & Policy Review Vol. 18 Nbr. 1, January 2007
    • January 1, 2007
    ...Judge Posner in Dreis & Krump Manufacturing Co. v. International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers, District 8, 802 F.2d 247, 255 (7th Cir. 1986): A company dissatisfied with the decisions of labor arbitrators need not include an arbitration clause in its collective barg......
  • The paradox of delegation: interpreting the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
    • United States
    • University of Pennsylvania Law Review Vol. 150 Nbr. 4, April 2002
    • April 1, 2002
    ...and the interpretive search must proceed to other sources. (178) Dreis & Krump Mfg. Co. v. Int'l Ass'n of Machinists, Dist. No. 8, 802 F.2d 247, 255-56 (7th Cir. 1986) (reversing the district court's denial of sanctions, and remanding for an award of attorney's fees under FED. R. CIV. P......