Don't click away your day in court: Beware e-commerce "Binding arbitration" clause


Have you heard about "binding arbitration" clauses in contracts? They're the part of the contract which states that if you have a dispute with the other party, you can't take them to court. You agree, instead, to go before an arbitration panel with your dispute. (Note that many claim the arbitration panels are notoriously unfavorable to consumers!)

Binding arbitration clauses are all over the place these days. They're in most credit card agreements, and are very often found in car purchase documents, home construction contracts, and all sorts of other contracts. And you may not even realize you're agreeing to this mandatory arbitration.

Have you ever made a purchase online and failed to read the fine print? You just clicked on "I agree to the terms and conditions"? Well if you did that at, you've agreed to mandatory arbitration.