For businesses that do business with consumers and include AAA arbitration clauses in their contacts, the American Arbitration Association is instituting a new set of rules specifically tailored to consumer disputes. The new rules supercede the Consumer-Related Disputes Supplementary Procedures that were previously used in conjunction with the Commercial Rules.
To access AAA arbitration after September 1, 2014, businesses will have to register their arbitration agreements with the AAA. This process includes submitting a copy of the agreement to the AAA for review to ensure it complies with the Consumer Due Process Protocol, submitting other relevant documents, and paying an annual fee. The agreement will then be listed on the AAA’s new Consumer Clause Registry for public access. If a business does not register its agreement, it will not be able to use AAA administration for its dispute, and the courts could find that the dispute must remain in court.
We are happy to assist any of our clients in pursuing compliance with the AAA’s new consumer arbitration registration, and can also assist you with the arbitration process for any disputes that arise.
James Pikl, Board Certified in Consumer and Commercial Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Learn more about James Pikl here