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Fight Against Forced Arbitration Heats Up at the Capitol

Whether it’s to get a student loan, get hired, or place an elderly loved one in a care home, people often have no choice but to sign contracts with forced arbitration clauses that make sure a day in court never comes. Instead of court, disputes are settled in arbitration, and the arbitrators often consider the corporations to be their clients.

Today at the Capitol, a diverse group of representatives took to the House Floor to discuss forced arbitration and the harm it does to individuals across the country. For a full hour on the Floor—a rare level of focus for a single topic in this venue—the group discussed common abuses of arbitration law, pending legislation, increased public awareness, and a number of federal regulations aimed at curtailing forced arbitration.

According to Representative Hank Johnson of Georgia, a member of the House Judiciary Committee and the leader of the session, “buried in the fine print of everything from consumer contracts and employee handbooks to nursing home agreements, forced arbitration clauses insulate corporations from accountability by eliminating access to the courts for untold consumers and workers.”

Mr. Johnson introduced a bill this week to prevent civil rights cases from being subjected to mandatory arbitration. The bill includes discrimination cases. Women trying to fight gender discrimination at the workplace would benefit especially from the legislation’s passage, said Mr. Johnson, because arbitration clauses are devastating to their cause.

We at the firm hope this will be the beginning of the end for forced arbitration. If you agree, please show your support and sign this petition to Stop Nursing Homes from Using Forced Arbitration to Deny Residents’ Rights.