BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - Resident Eric Katz testified before the Supreme Court this week, a milestone in the attorney’s law career.

“It’s really a crowning achievement in my professional career,” Katz said.

With his family in attendance, Katz represented 20,000 NJ physicians suing Oxford Health Plans. In the case, Oxford Health Plans v. John Ivan Sutter, M.D., the physicians are participating in a class action suit against the insurance company for unpaid or insufficiently paid claims.

The March 25 case is an important one, according to Katz, because it will really decide whether arbitration agreements in contracts allow for class action or just bilateral arbitration.

“This matter started out as a lawsuit in the superior court in NJ,” he said. “What makes this a unique situation is that this case was dismissed from court and forced into arbitration.”

“What we argued is that even thought we’re in arbitration, we’re still able to do the same things we did in court, which is class action,” he told The Alternative Press.

Katz said Oxford feels the opposite, saying arbitration should not involve class action. According to Katz, the Supreme Court justices were firing questions at both sides.

“The Supreme Court looks at class actions as a different kind of animal, a much different issue than other kinds of issues,” he said. “The justices were hard on both sides, they attacked both of us. They were doing what they’re supposed to do, make us work and answer questions.”

According to Katz, the most important result of this case will be how arbitration will be carried out in the future. Either way the Court rules, it will affect consumers and professionals across the board.

As for a result, Katz really couldn’t predict the outcome. Both sides argued well, according to Katz. He was up against a veteran of the Supreme Court, Seth P. Waxman, former Solicitor General of the Clinton administration.

Katz said one of his favorite parts of this case was standing in the same position of attorneys who had argued so many monumental cases before him.

“Standing in front of these justices at the same lector that cases like Brown v. Board of Education and Roe v. Wade…these cases that not only shaped history and the future of our country, they were argued right where I was standing,” he said. “It gives you a little bit of a chill.”