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The “arbitration scam” rears its ugly head again

I have not posted here in quite some time.  Interest rates charged by credit card companies are high (especially given the relatively low prime rates at which banks borrow).  Yet, with these I have not heard the volume or the intensity of complaints that consumers voiced just a few short years ago.

Nevertheless, I still receive communications from many consumer advocacy organizations, and one message really “raised the hairs on the back of my neck” today.  I asked permission to share that which is below (some original links may not be preserved, whereas others that were designed to track me as an email recipient, have been edited so as to make them generic); Ms. Jun was kind enough to reply to me directly.

Upon exploring some of her own advocacy work, one particular piece of testimony stood out (to me, at least); read more here:

Bankers just never seem to quit, even if they hibernate for a while, trying to “set you up” so they can steamroll over you:

Dear Dr Robert,

JPMorgan Chase recently sent its 47 million customers an email. Buried almost 2,000 words into that email were details of how it will begin to take away customers’ legal rights.

Chase is putting many of its credit card holders into forced arbitration “ripoff clauses”. The clauses prevent consumers from taking Chase to court, or joining class action lawsuits if the bank harms them or breaks the law.

Join us, and demand that Chase get rid of this rip-off clause.

Forced arbitration is a secretive, privatized system that takes away an individual’s rights to seek justice when they are cheated, discriminated against or defrauded.

This is a battle that’s been won before — Chase did away with forced arbitration ten years ago after intense pressure.

We need your help to get Chase to back down again.

Even if you are not a Chase customer, we need your help to take a stand because other major corporations are watching and could soon follow suit.

Thank you for taking action,

Linda Jun, Americans for Financial Reform

P.S. If you hold a Chase credit card and are personally affected by this new arbitration clause, you can opt out of it by sending a signed letter before August 7 with your name, account number, address and personal signature to Chase at P.O. Box 15298, Wilmington, DE 19850-5298.

Here at Americans for Financial Reform, we work day in and day out to make sure the big banks don’t always get the last word – with the press, with regulators, and with legislators. We try to shine a spotlight on key decisions facing the bank oversight agencies and lawmakers, so more people can see what they’re doing and hold them accountable.  And we work to build a chorus for reform, to push policymakers in the legislative and executive branches to stand up to Wall Street and adopt and enforce tough new rules.  Anything you can do to help — by signing petitions, donating money to our efforts, or speaking out in any other way — puts more wind in our sails and makes a real difference.




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Sent by Americans for Financial Reform
1615 L St., NW, Suite 450, Washington, DC 20036 – (202) 466-1885

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Keep paying attention.  And never quit distrusting these bullies and their tactics (backing you into a corner).


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