Forced arbitration is a widespread problem for American consumers. Corporations bury complex terms in fine print, and then argue that consumers “agree” to arbitration in everyday contracts. But in general consumers have little understanding of what forced arbitration is or what rights they are “agreeing” to give up. Put simply, forced arbitration means: NO JUDGE, NO JURY, NO RIGHT OF APPEAL. Further, the arbitrator is not even required to follow the law. Forced arbitration has been called a “silver bullet” used to kill consumer lawsuits. It provides what Adam Levitin calls “bargain basement justice.”
In Junk Justice, I wrote about statistical outcomes of lawsuits filed by large debt buyers in Maryland. Based on my study, the years 2009-2011 had a combined total of over 121,000 cases filed by the sample group of large debt buyers in the District Court of Maryland. But now, the picture is different. We see a consolidation in the industry, and a drop in the number of filings.
Defective Debt Buyer Affidavits and the Lack of Data Integrity: Other People’s Records (“OPR”) are Not “Business Records” of Midland Funding
Barry Stimpson, like so many other Americans, was sued by Midland Funding, LLC. Midland claimed that it had bought a debt Stimpson owed to Capital One. Midland tried to prove that Stimpson owned it money with three affidavits. The District Court of Canyon County, Idaho, found that these affidavits were insufficient. The court’s decision merits reading for its clear and full analysis of the law of evidence as applied to debt buyer affidavits.