There is a takeaway message from this latest devastating ruling by the Supreme Court, which says there is nothing wrong with giving corporations the power to prevent cheated consumers from banding together to mount class action lawsuits, and it is this: Corporate interests are on a slash-and-burn campaign against any sort of collective action on the part of the American people. —YL
Los Angeles Times:
The Supreme Court gave corporations a major win Wednesday, ruling in a 5-4 decision that companies can block their disgruntled customers from joining together in a class-action lawsuit. The ruling arose from a California lawsuit involving cellphones, but it will have a nationwide impact.
In the past, consumers who bought a product or a service had been free to join a class-action lawsuit if they were dissatisfied or felt they had been cheated. By combining these small claims, they could bring a major lawsuit against a corporation.
But in Wednesday’s decision, the high court said that under the Federal Arbitration Act companies can force these disgruntled customers to arbitrate their complaints individually, not as part of a group. Consumer-rights advocates said this rule would spell the end for small claims involving products or services.
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