Hello and thank you for allowing me the opportunity to assist you.
The answer is yes and no. I'll explain:
There is nothing stopping you from suing in small claims court. If the company fails to invoke the arbitration clause as a defense to the lawsuit, then the lawsuit will remain in small claims court and will be decided by the judge.
However, if the company invokes the arbitration clause, then the judge will dismiss the case and you will then need to arbitrate your dispute.
I've sued many, many people for breach of a contract
that has an arbitration clause, and I've won multiple judgments. Only one time has the defendant invoked the arbitration clause and gotten the case thrown out of court. However, I was suing individuals who did not bother hiring attorneys. The company will most likely retain an attorney, and the attorney will most likely invoke the arbitration clause to get the case thrown out, unless the company wants the dispute decided in court. And that is quite possible. It was my client's own contracts which had the arbitration clause, and for some reason they never wanted to arbitrate, which is why I sued.
So, in sum, the answer is that you can sue, but there is a possibility that the case will be dismissed.
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