“Voluntary” and forced arbitration agreements are quickly becoming the norm as businesses seek to shield themselves from liability. Kiplinger Finance recently examined the trend of forced arbitration agreements in credit card and other financial contracts. In many cases, consumers are given the option of opting out of arbitration. It’s critical to read the fine print of your contracts and follow up by opting out of such agreements whenever possible.
While most civil claims, including personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits, are decided in court, arbitration agreements force both sides to agree to settle their differences through an arbitrator of facts, outside the court of law. Frequently, these arbitrators survive on corporate business.