Recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings upholding the use of individual arbitration over class actions to resolve consumer disputes are good for consumers, according to Ballard Spahr partner Alan S. Kaplinsky, who describes himself as “the pioneer of class-action waivers.”

Mr. Kaplinsky said that companies prefer to deal with the consumer as an individual and not as part of a class because, even if class actions lack merit, it still takes a long time to defend them and that can be very expensive. Arbitration, by contrast, allows disputes to be resolved quickly, economically, and efficiently.

“Consumers almost invariably don’t get much benefit by participating in class actions,” Mr. Kaplinsky said. “The only people who benefit are plaintiffs’ lawyers. Everyone else, if they get anything, will end up with pennies on the dollar and that is after the class action has gone on for many years.”