Last week, Partner Tariq Chaudhri, Esq. along with associates Jacquelyn Matchett, Esq., and Chad Davis, Esq. attended the American Association for Justice Minority Caucus Days in Washington, D.C. There, they had the opportunity to meet with fellow plaintiff’s attorneys throughout the country. More importantly, they met with several members of Congress and staff to discuss and encourage the passing of legislation that directly affects consumers for the better. The main topic discussed “on the hill” was forced arbitration.
Most citizens are unaware of forced arbitration clauses that are buried in the fine print of most financial services and products like credit card agreements, cell phone contracts, and checking accounts. These clauses force Americans’ claims into arbitration – a rigged system where the corporation gets to pick the arbitration provider, there is almost no chance of appeal, the process is completely secret, and the right to seek justice is denied. One study found fewer than 7 percent of consumers covered by arbitration clauses realized the clauses restricted their ability to sue in court and a majority of consumers surveyed were unaware of whether their financial contracts included forced arbitration clauses at all. Additionally, of the 341 forced arbitrations in 2010 and 2011 in which consumers brought claims, they obtained relief in 32 disputes or only 9 percent of total claims.*
Working to end forced arbitration is a step in the right direction for protecting every person’s right to justice. The attorneys of Rosner Law Offices, P.C. were grateful to have the opportunity to make a stand for the residents and consumers of New Jersey.
Mr. Davis, New Jersey Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr., Mrs. Matchett & Mr. Chaudhri
If you are concerned about forced arbitration clauses and how they affect you, you may write your Congressman and Senators asking them to support any legislation which puts a stop to forced arbitration clauses, including the Arbitration Fairness Act.
For more information on Forced Arbitration:
*Arbitration Study: Report to Congress pursuant to Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act § 1028(a), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Mar. 2015, available at http://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/201503_cfpb_arbitration-study-report-to-congress-2015.pdf.