June 24, 2013

Supreme Court Finds Arbitration Agreements Waiving Class Actions Preclude Antitrust Class Actions Even Where Individual Claims are Small

Arnold & Porter Advisory

On June 20, 2013, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, significantly strengthening the application of arbitration clauses in class action cases. The Court held that arbitration clauses with class action waivers, including in antitrust cases, are enforceable regardless of whether the value of an individual plaintiff's claim was exceeded by the cost to arbitrate. In the 5-3 decision, authored by Justice Scalia, the Court continued two trends its decisions have featured the last few years: constricting class action litigation and enforcing arbitration agreements, even those that prohibit class actions.


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