•  
  •  
 

Abstract

Without even knowing it, just about everyone has agreed to settle disputes through arbitration and has waived any rights to proceed on a class-wide basis. While many consumers do not read the fine print in the agreements they sign, a variety of companies, from cell phone providers to car dealers, have consumers agree in sales contracts to arbitrate any claims and to waive the ability to proceed with a class action claim. This was the scenario in the case of Litman v. Cellco Partnership, in which a New Jersey federal district court held that the plaintiff cell phone customers could not use a state-law unconscionability defense to invalidate an agreement to arbitrate and a class action waiver, as the state law was preempted by federal legislation. Unfortunately, this holding misinterpreted state and federal law, as evidenced by prior precedent and cases decided after the fact. The holding also set an unfortunate precedent for consumers, stripping them of the only adequate remedy provided by law and subjecting them to a process that rarely rules in their favor.

Share

COinS
 

To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.