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Latest News
Arbitration Impenetrable Roadblock by Business Interest
Saturday, 18 January 2014

When the little guy gets shut out of court
The trend toward mandatory arbitration clauses has been accelerating for years, but attempts to curtail it have run into an impenetrable roadblock from business interests that are understandably eager to stay out of court. Their point might be justified if the arbitration process was fair, transparent and accountable. It is not.

Read more...
 
Forced Binding Arbitration - Builder Get Out Of Jail Free
Thursday, 09 January 2014

 Consumer advocates: Fine print could rob consumers of right to sue
Consumer advocates warn that a provision in an increasing number of consumer contracts robs consumers of their basic right to sue.  Greg Cole said he was forced into arbitration when his homebuilder, John Wieland Homes and Neighborhoods, wouldn't fix construction mistakes to his home in a development in East Cobb. Cole said cracks in walls and ceilings caused leaks that created a mold problem that sickened his family. 

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CFPB Monitor - FTC challenging arbitration
Sunday, 29 December 2013

CFPB Monitor - FTC files amicus challenging arbitration provision
Last year, the DOJ filed an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant in support of the merchants who were challenging the class action waiver in American Express’ arbitration agreement.  (The Supreme Court ruled against the merchants in a 5-3 decision.)


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Builders Fails to Accept Warranty Responsibility for Construction Defects
Tuesday, 09 July 2013

Canyon Lake dream home fills with mold, not memories
She pays the mortgage and insurance, yet a local woman’s dream retirement home has been vacant for years. Karen Rutledge said dangerous mold lingers in the walls, in a house the builder refused to fix properly.

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NYTimes Editorial: Binding Arbitration, Courts favoring powerful corporations
Sunday, 23 June 2013

Another Blow to Class Action
This week, the Supreme Court continued its aggressive effort to favor corporations
 by forcing customers to raise grievances through individual arbitration rather than a class action or some other joint legal challenge...The decision makes it very hard, if not impossible, to stop bad corporate practices because the potential award for an individual would be too small to justify a suit.

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Big Business Forced Arbitratiion - 2011 Supreme Court Ruling
Thursday, 09 May 2013

Forced Arbitration: Killing the Right to Sue Big Companies, One TOS Agreement at a Time  So-called forced arbitration clauses say that in the event of a dispute, you won't be able to file a class-action suit. Instead, your dispute will be settled one-on-one in a private arbitration forum. These clauses are commonly inserted into terms of service agreements, which you must agree to if you want to use the product or service. For years, this practice was prohibited by law in many states. But in 2011 the Supreme Court ruled in AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion that all state laws prohibiting forced arbitration clauses are preempted by the 1925 Federal Arbitration Act. And that opened the floodgates.

Read more...
 
SEC To End Mandatory Arbitration Clauses
Tuesday, 16 April 2013

SEC's Aguilar Calls for End to Mandatory Arbitration Clauses
Such clauses, which are standard in brokerage contracts and often included by registered investment advisers, require any client claim of losses to be settled in binding arbitration instead of the courts. "Investors should not have their option of choosing between arbitration and the traditional judicial process taken away from them at the very beginning of their relationship with their brokers and advisers," Securities and Exchange Commission member Luis Aguilar said in prepared remarks for the North American Securities Administrators Association's annual conference in Washington on Tuesday. "By providing investors with the ability to choose the forum in which to bring their legal claims and protect their legal rights, we enhance investor protection and add more teeth to our federal securities laws."

Read more...
 
Hightower: Binding Mandatory Arbitration Kangaroo Courts
Sunday, 31 March 2013

Hightower: Corporate kangaroo courts supplant our Seventh Amendment rights
Being wronged by a corporation is painful enough, but just try getting your day in court. Most Americans don’t realize it, but our Seventh Amendment right to a fair jury trial against corporate wrongdoers has quietly been stripped from us. Instead, we are now shunted into a stacked-deck game called “Binding Mandatory Arbitration.” Proponents of the process hail it as superior to the courts — “faster, cheaper and more efficient!” they exclaim. All you really need to know about today’s process is that it’s the product of years of conceptual monkey-wrenching by corporate lobbyists, Congress, the Supreme Court and hired-gun lobbying firms looking to milk the system for steady profits. First and foremost, these fixers have turned a voluntary process into the exact opposite: mandatory. Let’s look at this mess.

Read more...
 
Texas Rep. John Kuemple interested in protecting animals not homebuyers
Saturday, 30 March 2013

Lawmaker ignores housing issue
State Rep. John Kuempel is more interested in dogs and cats than he is in his own constituents.Homeowners all over Cibolo have been suffering from new homes with foundation failures caused by the shoddy construction practices of major home builders and we sought help from Rep. Kuempel. We asked him to file a bill in the Legislature to provide home buyers with the opportunity to have their lemon homes bought back by the builder when they have repeatedly failed to remedy significant problems... In the last days before the bill filing deadline, he wouldn't even meet with his constituents; instead he filed HB 1449, a bill to license and regulate dog and cat dealers.

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Cibolo Texas Serious on New Home Defects and Homebuyer Protection
Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Cibolo backs efforts for home buyer legislation
By a 6-0 vote, the Cibolo City Council Feb. 26 passed a resolution supporting state legislation that would provide protections and remedies for homeowners whose homes have structural problems. Cibolo is the first area city to support the home buyer protection legislation. Issues with substandard home building, Hartman said, have come up in cities across the state.  “We are trying to show it is not just a Cibolo, Metrocom, or San Antonio problem,” the mayor said. “It is way beyond our community. We need to address this at the state level and give home buyers protection.”

Read more...
 
Home Builder exempted from using licensed roofers
Saturday, 02 March 2013

Critics call roofing legislation a job killer
A bill in the state Senate would require roofing contractors to be licensed and regulated for the first time inTexas...Legislators say the bill, which exempts new construction, would help consumers... a substitute bill is being written that is "a little less stringent."

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Defective House and Lost Document Fees
Friday, 22 February 2013

Company avoids document fees
The Campbells purchased what they were told was a brand new home in October 2004, but within months after moving in, they realized the structure of the home -- and their investment -- was unsound.

Read more...
 
HOBB Update: Legislative Day at Texas Captiol
Sunday, 10 February 2013

Don’t Miss this Opportunity at the Texas Capitol
Attention: Tuesday February 12, 2013 at 10 AM. Your help is needed! Home Owners for Better Building and aggrieved homeowners will kick off Legislative Days and Home Lemon Law Campaign at the Texas State Capitol. Joining us at the Capitol will be Cibolo Mayor Hartman and Mayor Pro-Tem Liparoto. 

Read more...

 
City of Cibolo Sets the Higest Stndards in Texas
Sunday, 10 February 2013

Cibolo approves stricter home standards
City Manager Robert Herrera said the new homebuilding standards, approved Jan. 8 by Cibolo City Council, are among the strongest in the area and will help improve the quality of homes being built in the city. I think that speaks well of the city of Cibolo,” Herrera said, “in trying to protect the largest asset most of our residents will have when they live in our community.” The stricter standards require homebuilders or developers to conduct geo-technical tests on each lot and disclose to the city and home buyers the locations of home sites that are constructed on 24 inches or more of fill.

Read more...
 
Foundation Failure Epidemic
Friday, 08 February 2013

Faulty Foundations: Homebuilders exploit loophole
SAN ANTONIO - How solid is the house you are sitting in right now? For thousands of people in San Antonio… that's a troubling answer. Cracked walls and broken concrete are often blamed on the shifting soil of south Texas. But there is often another reason: shifty homebuilders. Your home's foundation may be crumbling underneath you right now. And that may be because your homebuilder took a shortcut when constructing the foundation.

Read more...
 
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