Professor Richard Frankel said in an article posted on The Atlantic Wire June 20 that a Supreme Court ruling will make it harder for groups to seek justice through class-action lawsuits.
In its ruling in American Express v. Italian Colors Restaurant, the court upheld the credit-card company’s right to require individual business owners who wish to challenge agreements with American Express to do so through arbitration.
The restaurant and other retailers objected to high fees American Express charges for debit cards and to the credit-card company’s requirement that disputes must be handled through individual arbitration.
The business owners had provided proof that individual arbitration was prohibitively expensive, said Frankel, who had filed an amicus brief on behalf of Professional Arbitrators and Arbitration Scholars in support of the restaurant.
The ruling “jeopardizes the right to file class actions,” Frankel said, contending that a majority on the court is “hell-bent on undermining” the ability of groups to take legal action through this means.