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S.1652 - Consumer Mobile Fairness Act of 2011
A bill to amend title 9 of the United States Code to prohibit mandatory arbitration clauses in contracts for mobile service.
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SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
(1) Consumer use of mobile services has dramatically increased over the last 2 decades, with many consumers relying primarily or solely on a mobile device for voice, data, and Internet use.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) Disputes involving small amounts in controversy are well-suited for class litigation, as class litigation allows a more efficient process than numerous similar individual actions, distributes the costs of litigation across a large pool of plaintiffs, and may present a stronger incentive for a defendant to cease or change harmful behavior.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) Many contracts for mobile services contain clauses that require aggrieved consumers to waive their right to litigate as an individual or class and instead submit to binding arbitration of any future dispute.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) Several States have found, through legislation or case law, that the clauses described in paragraph (4) are unconscionable or unenforceable when they bar class litigation.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(6) On April 27, 2011, the Supreme Court, in its decision in AT&T Mobility, LLC v. Concepcion, 563 U.S. X, slip op. (2011), held that States must enforce mandatory binding arbitration clauses even if they bar class litigation.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 3. ARBITRATION OF MOBILE SERVICE DISPUTES.
‘CHAPTER 4--ARBITRATION OF COMMERCIAL MOBILE SERVICE DISPUTES
‘SEC. 401. DEFINITIONS.
‘(3) the term ‘mobile broadband Internet access service’ means a retail service by wire or radio that provides the capability to transmit data and receive data from the Internet, including any capabilities that are incidental to and enable the operation of a communications service, that services end users primarily using mobile stations;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘SEC. 402. VALIDITY AND ENFORCEABILITY.
‘(a) In General- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a predispute arbitration agreement between a covered individual and a provider of mobile service shall not be valid or enforceable.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
‘(b) Applicability- An issue as to whether this chapter applies to an arbitration agreement shall be determined under Federal law. The applicability of this chapter to an agreement to arbitrate shall be determined by a court, 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 the agreement.’.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink