The issue in this case was whether the Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA) creates a remedy that is not subject to arbitration. CROA provides debt-ridden consumers with important remedies against companies that prey on them by claiming to help them repair their credit ratings but in fact provide services of dubious or no value.
CROA provides that the “rights” that it affords consumers cannot be waived, and that a consumer’s rights under the law include “the right to sue.” An arbitration agreement, in its essence, is a waiver of the right to sue. We argued that CROA’s unusual combination of a provision protecting all rights against waiver with another provision recognizing that the ability to sue falls within the scope of the term “rights” under the statute rendered an agreement to arbitrate CROA disputes invalid.
On January 10, 2012 the Supreme Court ruled 8-1 in favor of the petitioner.