Minnesota vs. National Arbitration Forum

The National Arbitration Forum and the Attorney General of Minnesota have reached an agreement under which NAF will cease accepting new arbitration cases involving consumers, including collection actions by credit card companies. The consent decree (dated July 17, 2009) does not apply to ICANN domain name disputes nor to certain other types of arbitration matters currently administered by NAF.

See also the AG’s press release, her earlier complaint against NAF, and NAF’s statement on the settlement.

The Attorney General has also asked the American Arbitration Association to exit the consumer arbitration field. (Another company, JAMS, also offers consumer arbitration services, but apparently has not been approached by the AG.)

Update, 7/22/09:  The American Arbitration Association says it will stop handling consumer debt collection cases “until some standards or safeguards are established.” Wall Street Journal, July 22, 2009, page A1 (full text of story here). See also Deepak Gupta’s take in CL&P Blog.