Is Arbitration Bad for the Rights of Injury Victims?

Is Arbitration Bad for the Rights of Injury VictimsAs the legal system continues to see an increased caseload, many businesses are exploring alternative ways to resolve disputes. One such alternative is arbitration, which is being used more and more frequently as a substitute for traditional courtroom proceedings.

Unfortunately, this increased reliance on arbitration has in many ways created an alternate system of justice, one which has a tendency to prioritize business interests over those of the individuals bringing cases against them. Our Greenville personal injury lawyers are proud to stand at the forefront of arbitration litigation, as Attorney Matt Christian has successfully defended the rights of elderly people to have a trial by jury.

Arbitration is Inherently Flawed

Arbitration clauses are now a common component of many different types of contracts, from employment agreements to cell phone contracts. Essentially, agreeing to these clauses causes you to waive your right to file a lawsuit in court. Instead, you must resolve your claim through so-called “independent” arbitration, which replaces the judge and jury with one professional arbitrator.

Why is arbitration bad for the individual?
  • Arbitrators are generally paid for by the company. They are supposed to remain unbiased, but they know that ruling in favor of the company will often result in future work.
  • Arbitration infringes on your rights. Individual arbitration clauses will prevent people from filing class-action lawsuits, making it tough to put a stop to illegal business practices.
  • Arbitration rulings are final, and are insufficiently regulated. There are no federal requirements to report these cases, you cannot appeal the decision, and everything is confidential. What’s to stop an arbitrator from defying state or federal law in their ruling?
  • Arbitration is frighteningly subjective. In these proceedings, there are no rules or regulations governing the standard of evidence a company needs to prove their case. It’s all up to the arbitrator (who the company pays for) and how they are feeling that day.

Countless Cases of Arbitration Failing Individuals

Some individuals are treated fairly in the arbitration process, regardless of the outcome of the ruling. However, many more have been denied their day in court due to these arbitration clauses. There are numerous examples of people who experienced serious pain and suffering, but could not properly pursue justice, including:

  • A 94-year-old woman died from a head wound not properly treated by nursing home staff
  • A woman who was injured after the brakes on her Honda failed
  • The parents of an infant born with severe deformities, possibly due to medical malpractice
  • A cruise ship employee who was drugged and raped by two coworkers

We’re Proud to Stand for Your Rights

At Christian & Christian , our Greenville personal injury attorneys are proud to represent injury victims and their families. One of the causes we are most passionate about is elder abuse and neglect, which unfortunately occurs with alarming frequency around the nation. Attorney Matt Christian, a partner at our firm, has been able to successfully defend the rights of the elderly in front of both the South Carolina and U.S. Supreme Courts, taking on nursing homes who tried to enforce arbitration clauses after neglecting their residents.
If you or a loved one has been hurt due to the negligence of another party, call our firm at (864) 408-8883 to seek justice.

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