WAIVER OF CONSUMER FRAUD CLAIMS AND CONSUMER ARBITRATION

WAIVER OF CONSUMER FRAUD CLAIMS AND CONSUMER FRAUD
The litigation in this case arises out of the plaintiff’s allegations that the defendant committed fraud and consumer fraud with regard to the performance of a home improvement contract. See Cox v. Sears, 92 N.J. 1 (1994). The defendant now relies upon arbitration clause and move to have the case dismissed. The arbitration clause provides the following:
Any dispute, controversy or claim arising out of or relating to this contract at the option of Care Temp may be submitted to binding arbitration with the American Arbitration Association and judgment on award may be entered in any amount entered in any court or company jurisdiction The arbitration clause as written is unenforceable under New Jersey law as promulgated by the New Jersey Supreme Court. In Garfinkel v. Morristown Obstetrics and Gynecology Associates, 168 N.J. 124 (2001), the court refused to enforce an arbitration agreement because the arbitration agreement failed to specifically include a waiver of statutory rights. The Supreme Court held that without the specific waiver of statutory rights, the agreement could not be said to encompass those statutory rights in the context of an arbitration clause. In Garfinkel, the court refused to force the plaintiff to arbitrate their statutory law against discrimination claims because the arbitration agreement specifically failed to include a waiver of statutory rights.