Plaintiff is a politician who agreed to appear in a reality TV show with his then-girlfriend. He challenges his entire contract with defendants – which included an arbitration clause and clearly said he might be portrayed in a negative light. When plaintiff was indeed portrayed in a negative light, plaintiff sued.
In response to defendants’ motion to compel arbitration, plaintiff alleges that the show’s producers assured him that he would be portrayed in a good light and that he felt pressure to sign the contract due to the film crew being ready to begin and the bright lights shining on him. These allegations do not specifically pertain to the contract’s arbitration clause; rather, they address how plaintiff felt about signing the entire agreement to both appear on the show and arbitrate any disputes. Therefore, plaintiff has failed to specifically challenge the arbitration clause independently from the rest of the contract.
Under Prima Paint Corp. v. Flood & Conklin Mfg. Co., 388 U.S. 395 (1967), the question of whether plaintiff’s claims are subject to arbitration must be decided by the arbitrator, not the judge.
We reverse the circuit court’s denial of defendants’ motion to compel arbitration. Remanded.
Abruzzo v. Bravo Media Productions, LLC (Lawyers Weekly No. 011-051-23, 8 pp.) (Aphrodite Konduros, J.) Appealed from Charleston County Circuit Court (Bentley Price, J.) James David Smith, Helen Hiser and Danielle Payne for appellants; Aaron Eric Edwards for respondent. South Carolina Court of Appeals.