Published: December 2019

Advocates call on Amtrak to end forced arbitration policy

Consumer Action joined a coalition of more than 30 groups in urging the federally-controlled and federally-subsidized Amtrak to remove the arbitration clause it implemented earlier this year for passengers. This new policy means that for any dispute ranging from a customer complaint to a mass casualty crash, passengers and their families are stripped of their right to go to court. Under forced arbitration, Amtrak disputes must be resolved in a secretive, privatized system, replacing and judge and jury with arbitrators.

Earlier this year Amtrak included a very broad forced arbitration contract in its passenger purchasing agreements, which forces complaints and disputes into arbitration and strips passengers of their right to go before a judge or jury. Contrary to the claims made by Amtrak, forced arbitration is neither faster nor more efficient for passengers harmed by the railroad. It simply allows corporations like Amtrak to evade responsibility when it inflicts harm upon its own passengers. Coalition advocates called on Amtrak to reverse its anti-consumer policy.


Lead Organization

Public Citizen

Other Organizations

Alliance for Justice | American Association for Justice | Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund | Center for Auto Safety | Center for Justice & Democracy | Center for Popular Democracy | Center for Responsible Lending | Consumer Action | Consumer Advocacy and Protection Society (CAPS) at Berkeley Law School | Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety | D.C. Consumer Rights Coalition | Earthjustice | Economic Policy Institute | Empire Justice Center | Florida Alliance for Consumer Protection | Googlers for Ending Forced Arbitration | Impact Fund | NAACP | National Association of Consumer Advocates | National Center for Transgender Equality | National Consumer Law Center (on behalf of its low income clients) | National Consumers League | National Employment Lawyers Association | National Employment Law Project | People's Parity Project | Public Citizen | Public Good Law Center | Public Justice | Teamsters Local 117 | Texas Watch | Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO

More Information

Click here to read the coalition letter in full.

For more information, please visit Public Citizen.

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