LD 1250
Session - 129th Maine Legislature
LR 2208
Item 1
Bill Tracking, Additional Documents Chamber Status

An Act To Prohibit Sexual Harassment as a Subject Matter of Mandatory Arbitration in Employment Contracts

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 26 MRSA §806, sub-§§1-B and 3-A  are enacted to read:

1-B Arbitration.   "Arbitration" means the use of a decision-making forum conducted by an arbitrator or panel of arbitrators within the meaning of and subject to Title 14, chapter 706.
3-A Mandatory arbitration clause.   "Mandatory arbitration clause" means a term or provision in a written contract that requires the parties to the contract to submit any matter arising under the contract to arbitration prior to the commencement of any legal action to enforce the provisions of the contract.

Sec. 2. 26 MRSA §808  is enacted to read:

§ 808 Mandatory arbitration clauses related to sexual harassment prohibited

1 Prohibition.   Except when inconsistent with federal law, a written contract entered into on or after the effective date of this section may not contain a mandatory arbitration clause that requires as a condition of the enforcement of the contract or obtaining remedies under the contract that the parties submit to mandatory arbitration to resolve any allegation or claim of an unlawful discriminatory practice of sexual harassment and that also further provides language to the effect that the facts found or determination made by the arbitrator or panel of arbitrators in its application to a party alleging an unlawful discriminatory practice based on sexual harassment is final and not subject to independent court review.
2 Exceptions.   Nothing in this section may be construed to impair or prohibit an employer from incorporating within a contract a clause or other mandatory arbitration provision not prohibited under subsection 1 upon which the parties agree.
3 Mandatory arbitration clause related to sexual harassment void.   Except when inconsistent with federal law, the provisions of a clause prohibited under subsection 1 are void. The inclusion of such a clause in a written contract does not impair the enforceability of any other provision of the contract.
4 Conflict.   If there is a conflict between any collective bargaining agreement and this section, the agreement controls.

Sec. 3. Maine Revised Statutes headnote amended; revision clause. In the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 26, chapter 7, subchapter 4-B, in the subchapter headnote, the words "sexual harassment policies" are amended to read "sexual harassment" and the Revisor of Statutes shall implement this revision when updating, publishing or republishing the statutes.


This bill prohibits an employment contract entered into after the effective date of this legislation from including a clause that requires arbitration of a sexual harassment allegation or claim and makes any such clause void. The bill does not affect the ability of an employer to include any other arbitration clause in a contract or to enforce the provisions of a contract other than the prohibited clause.

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