In a legal standoff, cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase faces a pivotal moment as the U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear a case involving a contractual dispute between the platform and its users.
This legal dispute centres around a 2021 sweepstakes, with users alleging false advertising. The key question is whether a judge or an arbitrator should decide which of two conflicting agreements should govern the dispute, determining whether the case proceeds to arbitration or court.
The Supreme Court’s decision to entertain arguments in this case signifies a crucial moment that could potentially reshape industry practices related to arbitration agreements.
The outcome may influence the formulation and enforcement of user agreements, particularly within the dynamic domain of digital currency trading. The Supreme Court’s involvement underscores the ongoing effort to define the distinctions between arbitration and legal proceedings.
Upon creating Coinbase accounts, users initially agreed to resolve disputes through arbitration. However, a subsequent sweepstakes agreement specified that contest-related disputes should be heard in a California courtroom. Despite Coinbase’s request for arbitration, a federal judge in California and the Ninth Circuit upheld the importance of the sweepstakes agreement, leading to the denial of Coinbase’s arbitration request.