I am a singer and the club I performed withheld my payment for a reason that had nothing to do with our contract
. Then when payment was given, they maliciously stopped payment on the check. I want to take them to small claims court but the signed contract states the following (please note: they do business
in CA but their attorney is based in NJ. And I guess they have a main business in NJ). Can I still take them small claims court? How can I go about getting my funds, plus penalties?
Arbitration of Disputes:
Any dispute or claim arising under this contract shall be settled by neutral, binding arbitration and not by court action, except as provided by New Jersey law for judicial review of arbitration proceedings. In the event of arbitration between the parties arising out of the terms of this contract, the prevailing party shall be entitled to recover reasonable attorney’s fees and costs from the non-prevailing party. Any matter, which is within the jurisdiction
of the New Jersey small claims court, is excluded from the arbitration provision. Any controversy or claim arising out of, or relating to this agreement, or the breach thereof, shall be settled by binding arbitration within the State of New Jersey, in accordance with the rules of the American Arbitration Association, and judgment upon the award rendered by the arbitrators may be entered in any court having jurisdiction thereof. This agreement shall be constructed and interpreted in connection with the laws of the State of New Jersey.