Sending Office: Honorable Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr.
Please join me in cosponsoring H.R. 1374, the Arbitration Fairness Act of 2017, legislation that would eliminate mandatory arbitration clauses.
Senate Republicans recently voted to repeal the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)’s rule prohibiting banks and credit card companies from writing forced
arbitration clauses. The tie-breaking vote from Vice President Mike Pence went against the advice of countless consumer groups who advocated for this crucial financial regulation. President Trump now has the opportunity to sign this resolution and prevent
so many consumers from pursuing class action suits in the wake of breaches or other problems. Now is not the time to repeal regulations, but to strengthen consumer rights and ensure opportunities to challenge corrupt corporations.
The recent breach of Equifax data left millions of Americans exposed. While this is not the first time a data breach or contract violation has left consumers feeling wronged, it is the latest in a series of examples that prove the importance of protecting
consumers’ rights. In the case of Equifax, like so many others, wronged consumers are prohibited from seeking legal recourse by a small clause in the fine print of their contract. Join me in ending forced arbitration clauses by becoming a cosponsor of H.R.
1374, the Arbitration Fairness Act of 2017.
Forced arbitration clauses are hidden in the fine print of contracts for new cell phone plans, apartment leases, credit card agreements and other such contracts. When consumers sign everyday agreements such as these, they are often not aware of the binding
measures to which they are agreeing. A forced arbitration clause states that any complaint, claim, or dispute that the consumer might have must be resolved by way of arbitration – through closed door meetings with both parties and one neutral arbitrator. These
clauses often force consumers to waive the right to join a class-action suit, which strips collective power from individuals all experiencing the same problem or facing the same contract violation. Forced arbitration bypasses our civil justice system and allows
corporations to hide wrongdoings from public scrutiny.
The Arbitration Fairness Act of 2017 would eliminate mandatory arbitration clauses in employment, consumer, civil rights and antitrust cases. This bill would expand the options for wronged consumers to challenge corporations through class action suits, thereby
increasing transparency and accountability. If enacted, everyday Americans would have more opportunities to challenge unfair practices and exercise their right to a trial by jury. The Arbitration Fairness Act of 2017 would restore consumer rights by eliminating
forced arbitration clauses and giving consumers a fair chance to face wealthy corporations in court.
If you have any questions or would like to co-sponsor this important piece of legislation, please contact Caroline Hunsicker in my office at email@example.com.
Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr.
Member of Congress
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