The People's Lawyer Consumer News Alert
Center for Consumer Law
  Volume 120 Number 3

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The People’s Lawyer’s Tip of the Day

As a tenant in Texas, you are entitled to the “quiet enjoyment” of your apartment, and the landlord must repair conditions that materially affect your health or safety. Click on the link to learn more about these laws and how to assert your rights.  Click here for more.

CFPB and DOJ Imposes Fair and Equal Access to Credit on Toyota Motor Credit

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Department of Justice (DOJ) reached a resolution with Toyota Motor Credit Corporation. The resolution requires Toyota to change its pricing and compensation system to substantially reduce dealer discretion and accompanying financial incentives to mark up interest rates. Toyota Motor Credit is also required to pay up to $21.9 million in restitution to thousands of African-American and Asian and Pacific Islander borrowers, who paid higher interest rates than white borrowers for their auto loans, without regard to their creditworthiness.  Click here for more.

Your Money

Drug prices are increasing far faster than any other aspect of health care. As a result, some patients undergoing treatment have to file bankruptcy. Pat Mastors started the Patient Voice Institute, which is a Drugmakers' patient-assistance program. These programs provide co-payment assistance or free or discounted medicines to people who can’t afford them. Click here for more.

For the Lawyers

Arbitration agreement that forbids arbitrator from applying applicable law unenforceable. Plaintiff filed a putative class action against Delbert alleging that Delbert violated debt collection practices. The district court granted Delbert's motion to compel arbitration under the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA), 9 U.S.C. 4. The Fourth Circuit concluded, however, that the arbitration agreement in this case is unenforceable. The court stated, “The agreement purportedly fashions a system of alternative dispute resolution while simultaneously rendering that system all but impotent through a categorical rejection of the requirements of state and federal law.” The agreement provided it was “subject solely to the exclusive laws and jurisdiction of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.” And that “no other state or federal law or regulation shall apply to this Loan Agreement.” The court concluded that the FAA does not protect the sort of arbitration agreement that unambiguously forbids an arbitrator from even applying the applicable law. Hayes v. Delbert Services Corp. Click here for more.

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