Arbitration Award Becomes Appealable Only After Being Entered As a Judgment By The Circuit Court Clerk

In of Tuscaloosa, Inc. v. Morton, [Ms. 1070488] (Jan. 9, 2009), the Alabama Supreme Court dismissed the appeal of an arbitration award because there was no "final judgment."  Ala. Code 6-6-15 sets out the procedure by which an arbitration award may be appealed, and it states that "the clerk or register shall enter the [arbitration] award as the judgment of the court."  In this case, although the arbitration award was filed with the court, it was never "entered" by the clerk as a judgment.  Therefore, because there was no final judgment which had been entered, the Supreme Cout lacked jurisdiction to hear the appeal, and the appeal was dismissed.