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Your Arbitration Rights Explained

January 21, 2011

As one of many half-assed services we provide, Fancy Plans (in association with Pants to Match) is proud to present a brief guide to arbitration “rights.” This plain-English breakdown of the legal and technical terms used will help you get a “leg up” in your next legal battle with predatory lending agencies, home owner’s associations and the combative legal team currently suing you for violating your Confidentiality Agreement with last night’s drunken Tweeting.

In addition to breaking it down into terms the average layperson can understand, this somewhat brief explanation will also clear up the many reasons that “rights” keeps appearing in quotes. Key explanations and added language will be highlighted in blue text for readability and ease of use when quoting it out of context.

Color-coordinating often helps give the illusion of fairness.

WAIVER OF JURY TRIAL AND ARBITRATION PROVISION

Arbitration is a process in which persons with a dispute: (a) waive their rights to file a lawsuit and proceed in court and to have a jury trial to resolve their disputes (also covers other resolutions, such as barroom brawl, coin toss, H-O-R-S-E, humbled apology, threatening late night phone calls) and (b) agree, instead, to submit their disputes to a neutral (but biased) third person (an “arbitrator”) for a decision. Each party to the dispute has an opportunity to present some evidence to the arbitrator. (In your case, you may present receipts for expensive luxuries, your highly negative public school disciplinary record, all bankruptcies filed, all bankruptcies considered, personal letters of recommendation from acquaintances currently in jail/rehab.) Pre-arbitration discovery may be limited. (In your case, severely fucking limited. Usually this will be constrained to a valid photo I.D. and a valid blank check whose ABA routing number and account information can easily be copied by the other party for unauthorized withdrawals.) Arbitration proceedings are private and less formal than court trials. (Less formal = you being referred to as “this lazy asshole” or “deadbeat” as well as several disparaging remarks referencing your sexual misadventures/penis length.) The arbitrator will issue a final and binding decision resolving the dispute, which may be enforced as a court judgment. (Or more rarely, a court-sanctioned kneecapping.*) A court rarely overturns the arbitrator’s decision.

* Also: dickpunching.

THEREFORE, YOU ACKNOWLEDGE AND AGREE AS FOLLOWS:

1. Acknowledgments. You acknowledge and agree that by entering into this arbitration provision:

A. YOU ARE WAIVING YOUR RIGHT TO HAVE A TRIAL BY JURY TO RESOLVE ANY DISPUTE ALLEGED AGAINST US OR RELATED THIRD PARTIES, INCLUDING HOLDING AND MANAGEMENT COMPANIES, THUG-LIKE ENFORCERS, HIGHLY PAID CHARACTER ASSASSINS AND UMBERTO, THE LANDSCAPER;
B. YOU ARE WAIVING YOUR RIGHT TO HAVE A COURT, OTHER THAN A SMALL CLAIMS TRIBUNAL (COMPOSED OF IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS) RESOLVE ANY DISPUTE ALLEGED AGAINST US OR RELATED THIRD PARTIES (INCLUDING OUR RELATIVES); and
C. YOU ARE WAIVING YOUR RIGHT TO SERVE AS A REPRESENTATIVE, AS A PRIVATE ATTORNEY GENERAL, OR IN ANY OTHER REPRESENTATIVE CAPACITY (INCLUDING REPRESENTING YOURSELF, WHICH WILL LEAVE YOU SUBJECT TO QUICK AND MERCILESS JUDGMENTS), AND/OR TO PARTICIPATE AS A MEMBER OF A CLASS OF CLAIMANTS, IN ANY LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST US AND/OR RELATED THIRD PARTIES, INCLUDING OUR PYRAMID-SCHEMING BROTHER-IN-LAW, DOUG.

2. Arbitration Fees and Process: Regardless of who demands arbitration, at your request we will advance your portion of the expenses associated with the arbitration, including the filing, administrative, hearing and arbitrator’s fees (“Arbitration Fees”). These fees will be financed at 31.75% per day until arbitration has been sufficiently “dragged out,” at which point these fees will be financed at prime + 257%. The arbitration hearing will be conducted in the county of your residence, or within 30 miles from such county, or in the county in which the transaction under this Agreement occurred, or in such place as shall be ordered by the arbitrator, such as current vacation hotspots, international waters, local dives, wi-fi hotspots or the moon. In conducting the arbitration proceeding, the arbitrator shall not apply any federal or state rules of civil procedure or evidence, but rather an (wait for it…) arbitrary set of rules whose ever-shifting requirements will resemble those of the arbitrator’s favorite drinking game/”house rules” Monopoly. [In the highly improbable event that] the arbitrator renders a decision or award in your favor resolving the dispute, you should probably got out and buy a lottery ticket or bet on some horses or something. At the timely request of any party, the arbitrator shall provide a written explanation for the award including all applicable citations, charts, graphs, line drawings and NSFW Flash animation. The arbitrator’s award may be filed with any court having jurisdiction, most likely one miles away and open inconvenient hours/accessible only by rented boat/mule. In the much more likely event that a decision finds AGAINST you, the arbitrator will sentence you to one of the following:

  • 24 hours in stocks
  • Stoning
  • Caning
  • Immediate bankruptcy (moral AND financial)
  • Lashing
  • Plank-walking
  • Internet vigilante justice
  • Scapegoating
  • Book throwing
  • Bedazzling

All personal information will be forwarded to both 4chan and The Smoking Gun.

-CLT

9 comments

  1. I was thinking of providing an Amicus Brief, but you appear to have nailed everything…including dickpunching. Getting fucked over was never so funny.


    • Thanks, Bob. I think the key element to legal humour is the word “dickpunching.” It’s also evidence that spellcheck has no sense of humour. It seems to believe the word is funnier as two words. We’ve agreed to “Ignore All.”


  2. Every time I hear the phrase ‘predatory lending’ I imagine Omar Little sitting behind a desk, but out on the street, on the west side of Baltimore convincing street dealers to buy waterfront condos. And he keeps saying, “Oh indeed” in response to their questions while cradling a sawed off and smoking the shit out of a Newport.

    I dare you not to see that next time you hear that phrase.

    This was as hilariously entertaining as it was informative. I may need to put you on retainer.


    • Having not seen much of “The Wire,” I’m probably going to have more trouble imagining this than you think. Not that you didn’t paint a pretty evocative picture.

      You’re more than welcome to put me on retainer. I won’t even charge anything for being retained as most of your alleged crimes will probably happen somewhere out of my jurisdiction and well out of my actual legal acuity. Still, it is nice to be needed, even if I prove to be entirely useless.


    • From the one condo deal I saw Omar negotiate, I can tell he’s great at “finalizing” things. Although, his deals tend to be very one-sided.


  3. I think at least 90% of lawyers should be rounded up and taken to Abu Grabass to be tortured for forever. The remaining 10% would be too busy with real cases to take on the countless bullshit lawsuits clogging our system and bleeding us all dry.

    I’m not in Arbitration at the moment, but I am awaiting Mediation. I’m currently the victim of one of these aforementioned bullshit lawsuits. Along with some others, I’m on the receiving end of a 2 million dollar “wrongful death” lawsuit. I don’t want to get into any of the details beyond the following:

    – The death happened 6 years ago. The case was filed 4 years ago, but still hasn’t made it to the Mediation stage yet.
    – I didn’t kill the guy (for a change).
    – My only connection is that the “Victim” was allegedly killed by a guy who once “fell under my domain”. But the “Killer” himself was never charged. In fact, the coroner states the cause of death was pneumonia.
    – While Killer was “under my domain” for a few weeks, I never personally met him, he wasn’t “under my domain” at the time, and the event in question didn’t occur anywhere near my property.

    The theory must be that I hypnotized Killer, without ever meeting him, and ordered him to give Victim pneumonia. This utter bullshit should never have made it to a courtroom! And because of a complete bullshit rule (Joint & Several Liability) that was written to further ensure lawyers will always get paid, I could find myself on the hook for the whole thing. The only reason I was named is because I got more money than the other broke-ass losers getting sued.

    Meanwhile, my insurance company wants to bend over like a fucking prison bitch and settle, so they can jack up my rates to cover it. Not only that, I may have to sue them to cover me, as they claim “somebody dying of pneumonia on the other side of town” isn’t covered by my policy.

    This is the kind of fucking bullshit that happens when laws are passed by lawyers and insurance companies can do whatever the fuck they want. Bunch of worthless motherfuckers!

    I want to hire Omar Little as my lawyer.


    • I’m not sure how a perfectly normal death by natural causes gets someone into legal trouble but it does set a dangerous precedent on all those hitmen instructed to make it look like “an accident.”

      I guess if there’s any bright side here, it’s that arbitration is like half of AFI’s Top 100 List: exceedingly long. At least when you’re getting fucked by the arbitrator, you generally don’t have to pay for the privilege. It could also be argued that the outcome is usually unfavorable, at which point some jackass pipes up with “You get what you pay for,” and is summarily beaten by those who just got fucked by a combination of predatory nimrods and a paragraph of fine print.

      Good luck with the uphill battle, SM. I’m sure if you meant to kill someone there would be no doubt in anyone’s mind who did it.


  4. Holy shit, I can’t believe I missed this (linked in from post on SM ‘glossary of terms’).

    (Attorney) Maurice Levy: You are feeding off the violence and the despair of the drug trade. You are stealing from those who themselves are stealing the lifeblood from our city. You are a parasite who leeches off the culture of drugs…

    Omar Little: Just like you, man.

    Maurice ‘Maury’ Levy: Excuse me? What?

    Omar Little: I got the shotgun. You got the briefcase. It’s all in the game though, right?


  5. I am currently going through a BBB arbitration against a contractor…but have also filed an email complaint against the Arbitrator for accepting a newly created invoice by the contractor who created it and submitted it the day of the Arbitration. The Arbitrator has sent us notes…he stated that the complaint I emailed was inappropriate and I take issue with that. Doesn’t he have to be accountable to the Process? Now I think he’s pissed off at me and the judgement still needs to happen.



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