The Pew Charitable Trust has released a report on the use of arbitration clauses by banks in checking account agreements. The report contains Pew’s findings on the prevalence of arbitration clauses and consumer attitudes about arbitration. It has been reported that Pew has sent or will send the report to the CFPB to use in connection with its arbitration study.
The report is based on Pew’s review of account agreements obtained from 92 of the nation’s 100 largest retail banks and credit unions by deposit volume that offered at least one personal checking account option to consumers. One of the report’s key findings is that there is overwhelming consumer dissatisfaction with the arbitration process, with consumers finding a majority of the procedural components of arbitration unacceptable.
There are several important caveats for readers of the Pew study that raise questions about its findings which we discuss in our legal alert on the report.