415-441-8669 | TOLL FREE: 888-50EVANS

Jun 9, 2018 by |

California Consumer Fraud: Fitbit Reveals the Ugly Truth about Arbitration

ATTORNEY NEWSLETTER

 The Arbitration Clause In Your Fitbit Contract

Consumer products often come with written terms and conditions, usually a little pamphlet in the box. The terms and conditions are mini-contracts and the manufacturer claims you agreed to the terms when you made your purchase.  Your Fitbit comes with terms and conditions too, one of which requires you to arbitrate any dispute you have with the manufacturer.  Like most Fitbit buyers, you probably did not know it was there.  And Fitbit recently admitted in a San Francisco federal court that you are not likely ever to use it.

A few buyers, however, now know all about the arbitration clause and are determined to challenge its enforceability.  When they brought a class action[1] alleging their Fitbits miscalculated heart rates, the manufacture said they needed to arbitrate the claims. The California consumer lawyers at Evans Law Firm, Inc. know all about arbitration clauses and how unfair those clauses can be in a wide variety of contracts from consumer contracts to nursing home admissions contracts.  If your ability to litigate your rights has been curtailed by an arbitration clause you did not agree to, call us today at (415)441-8669 and we might be able to help you.

Why Fitbit Likes Its Arbitration Clause

If you want to arbitrate a dispute with a product manufacturer like Fitbit you will first have to pay an arbitration fee which can run to $750 or more. Fitbit knows that no rational customer would pay $750 to arbitrate a claim over a $160 product.

Fitbit forces costly arbitration because it does not want users to band together to form a class action lawsuit for any product defects. Fitbit thus creates a catch-22 situation for customers.  Consumers cannot band together because of the individual arbitration requirements each is under nor is it economical for any one of them to sue. The company does not want to spend money on small-dollar arbitrations nor defend against big class actions. Fitbit claims to users that they can get a much better deal in private arbitrations rather than class action law suits but admitted in court that no rational consumer would consider paying the $750 fee for private arbitration of his or her claims.

Class Action 

One user represented by Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein has called Fitbit’s bluff. She filed her arbitration claim and put up the $750. Fitbit offered to settle. She rejected the offer, however.  She is determined to test the enforceability of the arbitration clause. After Fitbit made the settlement offer, the arbitrator closed its file.  The aggrieved customer did not receive even a modicum of due process on the issue of enforceability.  Not yet.  The class action is proceeding. This will be a very important case for consumers confronted with these arbitration clauses.

Contact Us

If your ability to litigate your rights has been curtailed by an arbitration clause you did not agree to, contact the Evans Law Firm for a free evaluation of your policy at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:info@evanslaw.com”>info@evanslaw.com</a>. Our attorneys have experience with complex financial contracts including life insurance and annuity contracts.  We can help guide any litigation through a jury trial or toward an equitable settlement.  We also handle cases involving physical and financial elder abuse, qui tam and whistleblower law, nursing home abuse, whole life insurance and universal life insurance, and indexed, variable, and fixed annuities.

META DESCRIPTION:

California consumer attorneys discuss arbitration clauses in consumer contracts.

[1] Evans Law Firm, Inc. is not involved in any way in the class action or any other current lawsuit against Fitbit, but our lawyers are following the case closely as we do litigate arbitration clauses.

Million Dollar Advocates Forum SuperLawyers Badge Best Lawyers Badge Avvo Lawyer Badge

Our Passion For Justice

415-441-8669 888-50EVANS

Hear What Our Clients Have To Say

"The Evans Law Firm has great attorneys that are relentless, with exemplary performance and energy devoted to my case. My case would not have resolved without Ms. Evans - a tireless attorney that will not give up or stop until the case is resolved successfully."