CONSUMER LAW: ARBITRATION CLAUSE WITH CLASS ACTION WAIVER

Citibank (South Dakota), N.A. v. Desmond, ___ So. 3d ___, 38 Fla. L. Weekly D1175 (Fla. 4th DCA May 29, 2013)

Citibank brought “a credit card debt collection action” against the defendant, and the defendant filed a counterclaim for violation of “the Florida Security in Communications Act, Chapter 934, Florida Statutes, by electronically recording conversations with it customers.  Citibank moved to compel arbitration pursuant to the credit card agreement, which contained an arbitration clause with a class-action waiver.”  The trial court denied the motion because the defendant “provided competent, substantial evidence that his statutory rights would not be vindicated through individual arbitration” because the cost “would exceed his potential recovery of $1000.”  The appellate court reversed based upon the United States Supreme Court’s decision in AT&T Mobility, LLC v. Concepcion, ___ U.S. ___, 131 S.Ct. 1740 (2011), which “held that the Federal Arbitration Act (‘FAA’) preempted state public policy concerns that invalidated class-action waivers in arbitration agreements.”