Congress is still considering legislation that would ban the use of pre-dispute arbitration agreements involving consumers or employees. The Senate Bill, S.1782, has seen no action since December 2007. The bill summary is as follows:
Arbitration Fairness Act of 2007 - Declares that no predispute arbitration agreement shall be valid or enforceable if it requires arbitration of: (1) an employment, consumer, or franchise dispute, or (2) a dispute arising under any statute intended to protect civil rights or to regulate contracts or transactions between parties of unequal bargaining power.
Declares, further, that the validity or enforceability of an agreement to arbitrate shall be determined by a court, under federal law, rather than an arbitrator, irrespective of whether the party resisting arbitration challenges the arbitration agreement specifically or in conjunction with other terms of the contract containing such agreement.
Exempts arbitration provisions in collective bargaining agreements from this Act.
Its companion bill, H.R. 3010, was last seen in subcommittee in October.
Not surprisingly, NELA favors the bills. The president would probably issue a veto if they passed.