On March 3, 2022, President Joe Biden signed the Ending Forced Arbitration of Sexual
Assault and Sexual Harassment Act of 2021 (the “Act”), which limits the use of pre-dispute
arbitration agreements and class action waivers covering sexual assault and sexual
harassment claims. As we had previously written, the Act amends the Federal Arbitration Act
(FAA) to give employees who are parties to arbitration agreements with their employers the
option of bringing claims of sexual assault or sexual harassment either in arbitration or in
The Act amends the FAA to include a new section, which states, in part:
[A]t the election of the person alleging conduct constituting a sexual harassment dispute or a
sexual assault dispute, or the named representative of a class or in a collective action
alleging such conduct, no pre-dispute arbitration agreement or pre-dispute joint action
waiver shall be valid or enforceable with respect to a case which is filed under Federal,
Tribal, or State law and relates to the sexual assault dispute or the sexual harassment
The Act gives employees the option to invalidate arbitration agreements and class or collective
action waivers with respect to sexual assault and sexual harassment claims. This means
employees may choose to either arbitrate these claims or pursue them in court regardless of
any contractual agreements with their employers.
The Act applies to all claims that arise or accrue after March 3, 2022, regardless of the date of
the agreement at issue. The Act, however, does not affect claims that arose or accrued before
March 3, 2022.
The Act does not affect otherwise valid arbitration agreements for claims that are not related
sexual assault and sexual harassment.