Greg Ziegler wins summary judgment for architect on declaratory judgment action overturning arbitration panel ruling.
Non-parties and non-signatories to an AIA design contract containing an arbitration clause attempted to take an assignment of the owner’s claims and intervene in an arbitration in spite of the AIA contract’s anti-joinder and anti-assignment provisions.
Greg Ziegler objected to the intervention and moved to dismiss the claims but the arbitration panel denied the motion to dismiss and allowed the intervention.
The Macdonald Devin attorneys then filed a declaratory judgment action in state district court in Dallas County, Texas seeking interpretation of the contract and the rights of the parties regarding the intervenors ability to obtain an assignment of rights and join the arbitration. The Dallas district court determined it had jurisdiction over the declaratory judgment action and ruled that the AIA contract prohibited the assignment and joinder and ordered that the intervenors are not proper parties to the arbitration, effectively overturning the arbitration panel’s decision.