For Immediate Release
February 28, 2019
Washington, D.C. – U.S. House and Senate members today stood up for the American public and declared a commitment to restoring the rights of consumers, workers, and small businesses to access the court system when they are harmed. U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chair Jerrold Nadler (NY), Rep. Hank Johnson (Ga.), and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) today introduced the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal Act (the FAIR Act) to end forced arbitration hidden in fine-print corporate contracts.
Forced arbitration clauses block consumers, workers, and small businesses from seeking justice and give corporations the power to force legitimate complaints into secretive, biased, and lawless arbitration proceedings. Particularly heinous are forced arbitration clauses that prevent individuals from joining their claims together to seek accountability for wrongful corporate actions that cause widespread or systemic harm.
In a letter submitted to members of Congress, the National Association of Consumer Advocates shared its strong support of the bill and urged its passage.
“We urge Congress to pass the FAIR Act and other bills that will meaningfully restore individuals’ right to seek remedies before a judge and jury,” the letter said. “The legislation would not bar arbitration, but it would give consumers and workers the true ability to choose how to seek justice when they are harmed.”
“Forced arbitration is a rigged secret proceeding that denies the cheated and ripped off the right to seek remedies before a judge and jury, and allows corporations to hide their misconduct from the public,” said Christine Hines, legislative director at National Association of Consumer Advocates. “The FAIR Act and other bills introduced today will help to level the playing field for consumers and workers by ending forced arbitration in the corporate fine print and restoring our choice to seek to hold wrongdoers accountable in open court.”