Category Archives: Arbitration

Just how expensive do the new AAA Arbitration Rules make mass arbitration? And how much will they suppress claims?

The industry often claims that arbitration is cheaper than litigation for consumers. Well, not so much any more–if that was ever true–after the AAA’s new mass arbitration rules that Adam Pulver reported about on January 29. Adam mentioned the $3,125 initiation fee. In addition, under the new rules, for cases that proceed beyond the initiation […]

Spitko Article: Arbitration Secrecy

E. Gary Spitko of Santa Clara has written Arbitration Secrecy, 108 Cornell Law Review 1729 (2023). Here’s the abstract: Parties to an arbitration contract may agree to a secrecy clause that will govern their arbitration process to protect the confidentiality of their proprietary or personal information. Of great concern, however, they also may use such an […]

AAA Updates Mass Arbitration Rules to Be More Favorable to Business

As previously discussed on the blog, corporate defendants have in several cases refused to comply with AAA’s rules regarding payment when customers invoke their contractual rights and file arbitration demands en masse. Reacting to the complaints of corporate defendants, AAA has now altered its mass arbitration rules to, among other things, drastically reduce the fees […]

“Verizon’s $100 million fee settlement is setback for mass arbitration critics”

At Reuters, reporter Alison Frankel has this story on a recent class-action settlement with Verizon. Verizon (as is typical of cellphone companies) requires customers to agree to arbitrate any disputes that may arise. The settlement avoids appellate review of Verizon’s effort to limit arbitrations to batches of 10 at a time, which, in situations where […]

Baltimore Sun Guest Essay: You’re giving away your rights in those online contracts you don’t read

Here, with Myriam Gilles of Cardozo, Prentiss Cox of Minnesota, and David Vladeck of Georgetown. Excerpt: Perhaps the most consequential documents ever produced in this country are the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The Constitution identifies our most important rights, while the Declaration explains why the deprivation of those rights justified the fight for independence. […]

Eleventh Circuit Addresses Timeshare Defendants’ Arbitration Gamesmanship

The Eleventh Circuit today weighed in on a matter involving the increasingly frequent scenario of a corporate defendant refusing to comply with the terms of the arbitration agreement it foisted upon consumers. Three consumers who had bought timeshares through Wyndham Vacation Resorts filed claims for breach of contract and fraudulent inducement with the American Arbitration […]

Nearly 100 members of Congress urge the CFPB to issue a new arbitration rule

More information here. Here’s an excerpt: Consumers must be given a meaningful opportunity to choose how to proceed when disputes arise. Take-it-or-leave-it terms and conditions imposed in a consumer contract, through use of a product, or by signing up for a service does not allow that opportunity. Restoring consumers’ ability to make the choice about […]

Book Chapter: The Federal Arbitration Act Should Not Cover Consumer Claims

I wrote The FAA Should Not Cover Consumer Claims, to appear in The Federal Arbitration Act: Successes, Failures, and a Roadmap for Reform (Richard A. Bales & Jill I. Gross eds., forthcoming 2024 Cambridge University Press). Here is the abstract: Consumer protection laws face a fundamental enforcement issue: because consumer claims are typically for small […]

The arbitration debate continues: a reply to Mark Levin and Alan Kaplinsky

As regular readers of the blog know, last month some 160 law academics filed with the CFPB a comment supporting the issuance of a new arbitration regulation (disclosure: I served on the drafting committee). Mark J. Levin & Alan S. Kaplinsky of Ballard Spahr recently posted a critique of the law professor comment on the Consumer Finance […]

3rd Circuit Won’t Force Arbitration Where Defendant Won’t Follow AAA Rules

Rosario Hernandez sued MicroBilt after a verification report the company issued inaccurately stated she was on a government watch list, leading to her being denied a loan. Citing a mandatory arbitration agreement in her loan application, MicroBilt moved to compel, and Hernandez dismissed her court complaint and submitted her claims to the AAA for arbitration. […]