Arbitration Clauses Onstage

by Jeff Sovern

Recently I saw an off-Broadway play by Norman Shabel, A Class Act.  Shabel is a longtime practicing lawyer and the play is about negotiations to settle a toxic waste class action case (not a consumer case).  Nevertheless, the lawyers note that the case can proceed as a class action because the victims–people who have consumed water tainted by the toxic waste–have not agreed to an arbitration clause.   I don't know if a non-lawyer would like the show, and I found the first half slow-going, but I definitely enjoyed the second half.  And I didn't have to agree to an arbitration clause to see it. 

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