An 'Arbitration Revolution'? American Arbitration Association, Awaiting Guidelines, Halts Debt-Collection Arb (Web)

Today’s Wall Street Journal on Page One says that the American Arbitration Association’s withdrawal from consumer debt collection disputes is more trouble for the credit card industry beleaguered by rising defaults and new federal fees restrictions.

The WSJ article is available here by subscription; the WSJ’s Law Blog leads by noting, “It’s too soon to say, in all likelihood, but we could be in the early stages of an arbitration revolution.”

The American Arbitration Association, a New York-based nonprofit that is the nation’s largest ADR provider, hasn’t yet offered details, but an unnamed official told the WSJ that, like the National Arbitration Forum’s Sunday settlement announcement, it also will not handle debt-collection arbitrations. 

The NAF bowed out, citing suits it is facing about its practices, but the AAA leaves the door open, according to the official in the WSJ, “until some standards or safeguards are established.”

–Russ Bleemer, Editor, Alternatives