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After discussing what mass arbitration is and its growing use for claims against companies in the consumer finance industry, we discuss the factors that make companies most vulnerable to mass arbitration claims. We then identify drafting strategies for arbitration agreements to deter the initiation of mass arbitration claims. We look next at how companies can benefit from the use of bellwether procedures, address criticism of such procedures, and discuss ethical issues that have been raised regarding the use of mass arbitration by plaintiffs’ attorneys. We conclude by discussing how the most widely used arbitration administrators have responded to the growing use of mass arbitration and how alternative administrators have approached mass arbitration, addressing criticism of industry for challenging the use of mass arbitration, and looking at whether companies should consider abandoning the use of arbitration agreements in response to mass arbitration.
Alan Kaplinsky, Senior Counsel in Ballard Spahr’s Consumer Financial Services Group, leads the conversation, joined by Mark Levin, Senior Counsel in the Group.
Andrew Pincus is a co-author of a recent paper published by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for Legal Reform, “Mass Arbitration Shakedown: Coercing Unjustified Settlements.” To read the paper, click here.
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