We haven’t heard much about e-scooters since the pandemic started. No one wanted to be out and about. But now that the restrictions are lifting, more scooters are out on the roads. There’s still one major problem with these companies.
A Fox 5 investigation reported that the rental agreements for these scooters states that you give up your right to sue the company or join a class action lawsuit if you get injured on one. They don’t make it easy to notice either.
The report gives an example from Bird. When you rent a scooter on the phone app, you get a 48 page document in tiny font that discusses the agreement. It’s not until page 30 that you see that you’ll be bound under an arbitration agreement, which means that you give up your rights to sue the company if you agree to it.
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Worse for Georgians, you would have to travel to Los Angeles for your arbitration hearing. All the e-scooter rental companies have these arbitration agreements, though Spin does allow you to attend a hearing in Atlanta. However, these arbitration sessions are heavily weighted in favor of the companies. Worse, once the arbitrator makes their decision, there’s no way to appeal.
Could you opt-out? Maybe, if you write to the company within 30 days of your first ride to opt out of that clause. We encourage all readers to read the full article to learn more about the issue.
We all have the right to take those who harm us to court and let a judge or jury decide a case under our legal system. Arbitration removes many of those rights, plus the checks and balances inherent in our courts to make the system fair. If you feel you may have been caught in an arbitration agreement, contact John Foy & Associates. We may be able to help.