House Judiciary Passes FAIR Act, Legislation to End Forced Arbitration
Today, the House Judiciary Committee passed H.R. 1423, the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal Act (FAIR Act) by a vote of 22-14. The FAIR Act would end the use of forced arbitration in consumer, worker, civil rights, and antitrust disputes. This is the first time the bill has ever moved in Congress. The bill now heads to the House floor for a full vote.
House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) issued the following statement:
"Today, we took a major step to fully restore Americans’ access to the courts by passing historic legislation to end forced arbitration. Forced arbitration is a secretive, closed system that deprives Americans of their day in court and shields corporations from accountability and scrutiny for abusive conduct. We must ensure victims of sexual assault, racial discrimination, and other forms of corporate abuse and misconduct have a fair chance to hold their employers accountable. I look forward to supporting this legislation when it passes the full House.”
Forced arbitration clauses are often buried in the fine print of everyday contracts. Many companies use forced arbitration as a tool to protect themselves from consumers and workers who seek to hold them accountable for alleged wrongdoing. By burying a forced arbitration clause deep in the fine print of take-it-or-leave-it consumer and employment contracts, companies can evade the court system, where plaintiffs have far greater legal protections, and hide behind a one-sided process that is tilted in their favor.
Chairman Nadler’s full statement is available here.