Pro Bono News

Will the Supreme Court Further Limit Access to Justice

Monday, October 01, 2018

Will the Supreme Court Further Limit Access to Justice?

"The U.S. Supreme Court’s new term starts Monday and a question looms: Will the high court further limit access to justice?

Millions of consumers and employees cannot hold corporations that cheated or injured them accountable because the court recently changed the law and held that federal pre-emption, arbitration clauses and class action bans eliminated their rights to a day in court and a jury trial. Four cases now pending ask the court to immunize corporations even more.

‘New Prime v. Oliveira’

New Prime v. Oliveira, to be argued Wednesday, is a class action against a national trucking company for cheating its drivers. Prime first charges drivers to work as “apprentices,” then has them work as “driver trainees” for less than minimum wage, and only forgives their debts if they work over a year. Some end up paying the company or working for free. (Disclosure: Public Justice represents Dominic Oliveira.)
Prime claims the suit is barred because the Federal Arbitration Act requires enforcement of the mandatory arbitration clause in its workers’ agreement that bans class actions. Section 1 of the FAA, however, says the statute does not apply to “contracts of employment” of transportation workers..."

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