Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Doe v. Columbia North Hills Hospital Subsidiary, L.P.

Court of Appeals of Texas, Second District, Fort Worth

March 23, 2017

JANE DOE APPELLANT
v.
COLUMBIA NORTH HILLS HOSPITAL SUBSIDIARY, L.P., COLUMBIA NORTH TEXAS SUBSIDIARY GP, LLC, AND HCA HEALTH SERVICES OF TEXAS, INC. APPELLEES

         FROM THE 67TH DISTRICT COURT OF TARRANT COUNTY TRIAL COURT NO. 067-286449-16

          PANEL: WALKER and MEIER, JJ.; and CHARLES BLEIL (Senior Justice, Retired, Sitting by Assignment).

          OPINION

          BILL MEIER JUSTICE

         I. Introduction

         A court cannot compel arbitration in the absence of a valid arbitration agreement, and a valid arbitration agreement cannot exist in the absence of employee notice and acceptance. In re Dallas Peterbilt, Ltd., L.L.P., 196 S.W.3d 161, 162 (Tex. 2006); In re AdvancePCS Health L.P., 172 S.W.3d 603, 605 (Tex. 2005). In this appeal from a final judgment confirming an arbitration award in favor of Appellees Columbia North Hills Hospital Subsidiary, L.P., Columbia North Texas Subsidiary GP, LLC, and HCA Health Services of Texas, Inc., Appellant Jane Doe argues in two issues that the trial court abused its discretion by compelling arbitration of her claims against Appellees because she had no notice of, nor did she accept, their binding arbitration policy. We conclude and hold that Doe did not have notice of Appellees' arbitration policy as a matter of law. We will reverse and remand.

         II. Background

         Appellees implemented a Mandatory Binding Arbitration Policy in 2006. It provides in relevant part that "both the employee and the [employer] agree to give up any right either of them might have to a jury or judge trial regarding any issue governed by the [Arbitration Policy]" and that "[a]ll disputes governed by the [Arbitration Policy] shall be submitted to final and binding arbitration." The Arbitration Policy covers claims for employment discrimination, retaliation, and negligence, among other things, and is expressly governed by the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA). Appellees' various employment policies, including the Arbitration Policy, are posted on their intranet website, called "Compliance 360." The policies are "available to all employees at all times" through the intranet site.

         Columbia North Hills Hospital Subsidiary, L.P. (the Hospital) hired Doe as a part-time Multi-Skill Tech in August 2012.[1] Like all new employees, Doe participated in new employee orientation. During the orientation, Appellees informed Doe of their intranet site and instructed her that she was responsible for reviewing and familiarizing herself with any polices that were applicable to her employment. Doe signed an "ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF RECEIPT OF POLICIES, " which provided in relevant part as follows:

North Hills Hospital Policies can be found and printed from the online tool Compliance 360, which is available from the North Hills Hospital intranet website. Copies of policies can also be obtained in departmental manuals, from your director, or from the Human Resources Department. While all policies are important, there are a few that we would like for you to pay particular attention to as you begin your employment at North Hills. These policies have been printed for you, and are attached to this cover sheet. Please read these policies. . . .
. . . .
I acknowledge that I have received copies of the policies listed below. It is my intention to read them and familiarize myself with them. I also understand that I can access additional policies through Compliance 360, departmental manuals, and the North Hills Hospital Employee Handbook.
• Parking Policy
• Patient Safe Handling and Movement
• Tobacco and Smoke Free Environment Policy [Emphasis added.]

         Doe also signed an acknowledgment of the following:

I have been oriented to and/or provided materials to examine regarding safety, security and policies and procedures. I was provided an opportunity to ask questions during the orientation. With my signature, I acknowledge my orientation to the above materials and I understand my responsibility to familiarize myself ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.