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Green Tree Financial Corporation—Alabama v. Randolph

United States Supreme Court
531 U.S. 79, 121 S.Ct. 513, 148 L.Ed.2d 373 (2000)


Larketta Randolph (plaintiff) purchased a mobile home with financing from Green Tree Financial Corporation (Green Tree) (defendant). Randolph signed a financing contract with Green Tree, which included a fee for repossession insurance as a finance charge. The contract also required all disputes to be submitted to binding arbitration. Randolph brought a class-action lawsuit against Green Tree, alleging that the financing contract violated the Truth in Lending Act and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act. The district court granted Green Tree’s motion to compel arbitration, and Randolph appealed. The Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed, holding that the financing contract’s arbitration clause was unenforceable. Specifically, the appeals court focused on the fact that the contract did not apportion arbitration fees and that this threatened Randolph’s ability to vindicate statutory rights. Green Tree petitioned for a writ of certiorari in the United States Supreme Court.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Rehnquist, C. J.)

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