Friday, December 2, 2022

Play

Group wants rollbacks of some IA voting restrictions; RSV, Flu, COVID: KY faces "Triple Threat" this winter; Appeals court halts special master review of documents seized at Mar-a-Lago.

Play

The Senate passes a bill forcing a labor agreement in an effort to avoid a costly railway worker strike. The House Ways and Means Committee has former President Trump's tax returns in hand. The Agriculture Committee is looking at possible regulations for cryptocurrency following the collapse of cryptocurrency giant FTX. The Supreme Court will be reviewing the legality of Biden s student debt relief program next year. Anti-semitic comments from Ye spark the deletion of tweets from the the House Judiciary Committee GOP's Twitter account.

Play

The first-ever "trout-safe" certification goes to an Idaho fish farm, the Healthy Housing Initiative helps improve rural communities' livability, and if Oklahoma is calling to you, a new database makes it easier for buyers and builders to find available lots.

Report: Lighting Strike More Likely Than Forced Arbitration Win

Play

Monday, September 16, 2019   

SEATTLE — Tens of millions of workers and consumers have signed agreements to not sue companies and instead settle through arbitration. But a new report says they're more likely to be struck by lightning than to win a case through the so-called forced arbitration process.

The American Association for Justice analyzed data from the two largest arbitration providers between 2014 and 2018 and found that of the 60 million employees subject to forced arbitration, only 282 were awarded monetary damages. Larry Shannon, government affairs director with the Washington State Association for Justice, said the state's Supreme Court tried to bar these agreements, but the U.S. Supreme Court preempted states in 2018.

"The U.S. Supreme Court drew a road map to give immunity to these corporations by imposing these forced arbitration agreements on individual consumers and workers,” Shannon said.

The AAJ estimates there are 800 million forced arbitration clauses in effect for consumers. However only 6,000 cases are brought forward each year, with consumers winning just an average of 382 of them. Supporters of forced arbitration say it's easier and less expensive than a trial.

Julia Duncan, senior director of government affairs with the AAJ, said there are two troubling characteristics of the forced arbitration process: corporations choose the arbitration provider, and the proceedings are secretive. She said “confidentiality” means folks aren't able to speak out about what happened to them.

"Even more concerning, especially in the context of the #MeToo movement, is that other workers, other consumers aren't able to find out if other people have had similar experiences,” Duncan said. “And you see this in the cases of sexual harassment."

Shannon said there are cases when arbitration makes sense.

"We fully support arbitration and alternative dispute-resolution measures when they are entered into in a process to resolve a dispute - not before a dispute has ever arisen,” he said.

Last week, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee passed the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal Act, which would end this involuntary practice. A vote on the House floor could come as soon as this week.

Disclosure: Washington State Association for Justice contributes to our fund for reporting on Consumer Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
According to the Brennan Center, at least one bill with a provision restricting access to voting was introduced in the legislature of every state except Vermont in 2021. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The Iowa League of Women Voters plans to ask the Iowa Legislature to rethink the voting restrictions put in place prior to last month's midterm electi…


Environment

Agriculture groups and government agencies aren't slowing down in trying to convince farmers to use more sustainable practices such as cover crops…

Social Issues

Winter is here, leaving many older South Dakotans vulnerable to social isolation. But a growing body of research, as well as opportunities, shows …


Almost 60% of Black students and 50% of Latino students experience food insecurity, compared with 30% of their non-Hispanic white peers, according to a study by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

By Jala Forest / Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan Reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration Nearly 40% of college students a…

Environment

The Biden administration has proposed a rule to limit methane flaring from oil and gas development on public lands. The rule would impose royalty …

Each year in the United States, an estimated 58,000 to 80,000 children younger than 5 are hospitalized due to RSV infection, according to the CDC. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The flu, COVID and RSV are rapidly spreading in Kentucky, and health experts say that's a problem for hospitals, schools and the state's vulnerable …

Environment

As its 125th anniversary nears, the Connecticut Audubon Society has released a report detailing the effectiveness of conservation efforts in the …

Social Issues

2022 was a banner year for women elected as governor. Nearly one-third of America's governors will be women next year, which is a record. Iowa …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021