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Thibodeau v. Comcast Corp (Topics:Contracts/Capacity, Legality, Assent, and Formation)
Transcript of Thibodeau v. Comcast Corp (Topics:Contracts/Capacity, Legality, Assent, and Formation)
Emily Staker Thibodeau Comcast Facts: Comcast's Defense ISSUE Should the court enforce the arbitration clauses that were part of the "customer agreement" contracts and require that the plaintiff and the defendant to arbitrate their disputes? Facts: Thibodeau's case The Reasoning • Subscribed to AT&T non-premium television channels, otherwise known as extended basic service and was required to pay monthly charges for cable converter boxes and remote controls.
• Comcast bought out AT&T Broadband and the contract changed in a small unapparent way with new agreements
• Thibodeau learned that the use of the cable converter boxes and remote controls were not necessary to receive basic service and tried to take Comcast to court. ..."THERE SHALL BE NO RIGHT OR AUTHORITY FOR ANY CLAIMS TO BE ARBITRATED ON A CLASS ACTION OR CONSOLIDATED BASIS OR ON BASES INVOLVING CLAIMS BROUGHT IN A PURPORTED REPRESENTATIVE CAPACITY ON BEHALF OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC (SUCH AS A PRIVATE ATTORNEY GENERAL), OTHER SUBSCRIBERS, OR OTHER PERSONS SIMILARLY SITUATED UNLESS YOUR STATE'S LAWS PROVIDE OTHERWISE..." •When Thibodeau went to file a class action suit against Comcast, Comcast appealed due to the Binding Arbitration stated in the contract as it states in the fine print: •When Thibodeau went to file a class action suit (because others were also wronged and were filing suits) against Comcast, Comcast requested that the individual arbitration be enforced. They were denied to have the complaints dismissed and the class action suit was enacted. The Decision •Comcast was denied their request. The individuals that filed against Comcast (Thibodeau included) did not have to follow Comcast’s contract that stated that only individual arbitration could be acted upon when an issue arises with their company. •The court ruled that Comcast’s customer agreement was “unconscionable and unenforceable.” This agreement unreasonably favors Comcast, because it is unfair to expect each person who has a conflict with the company to individually go through the arbitration process. Class-action suits are important for consumers because they help them to assert their lawful rights with the limited financial resources and time that they have. By filing together, the consumers were able to cover the entire issue that the company needed to fix and they received the relief they deserved.