Celtic Life Ins. Co. v. Brown

Decision Date01 November 2002
PartiesCELTIC LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY v. Barry R. BROWN and Kimberly Brown. E. Graham Stokes v. Barry R. Brown and Kimberly Brown.
CourtAlabama Supreme Court

Robert S.W. Given, F.A. Flowers III, and Harlan F. Winn III of Burr & Forman, L.L.P., Birmingham, for appellant Celtic Life Insurance Company.

Barry A. Brock and J. David Moore of Walston, Wells, Anderson & Bains, L.L.P., Birmingham, for appellant E. Graham Stokes.

Ted L. Mann and Robert Potter of Mann, Cowan & Potter, P.C., Birmingham, for appellees.

HOUSTON, Justice.

The sole issue in these consolidated appeals is whether the Barbour Circuit Court erred when it denied the appellants' motions to compel arbitration on the basis that the relevant arbitration agreement bars the arbitrator from awarding punitive damages (although the right to enforce this provision was waived) and contains no severability clause. The initial briefs in this case were filed before the release of our decision in Ex parte Celtic Life Insurance Co., 834 So.2d 766 (Ala.2002), which involved the same arbitration agreement and the same issue, and which is therefore dispositive of these appeals. In accordance with Ex parte Celtic Life Insurance Co., we reverse the trial court's order denying the appellants' motions to compel arbitration and remand the cases for further proceedings.

REVERSED AND REMANDED.

LYONS, BROWN, JOHNSTONE, HARWOOD, WOODALL, and STUART, JJ., concur.

MOORE, C.J., dissents.

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