Texas Watch

Accountability

Don't Sell Our Rights, Commissioner

The Texas insurance commissioner is considering an industry proposal that would allow an insurance company to buy your legal rights for a few dollars a month.

This is unprecedented. Never has the insurance department approved a request to allow an insurance company to include what is called a pre-dispute binding arbitration clause in its policies. In fact, it has been part of the agency's published guidelines to reject any insurance policy that includes such language.

Statement on ATF Findings in West Fertilizer Fire

Alex Winslow, executive director of Texas Watch, released the following statement:

The ATF held a press conference today speculating that the fire at the West fertilizer plant was a criminal act. They offered no scientific evidence for their conclusion, only that they claim to have ruled out other possible causes. Today’s media event did little to clear up the confusion about the events leading up to the fire at the West plant three years ago.

CFPB to Rein In Forced Arbitration

90 days. 90 days until consumers might regain vital protections against powerful corporations.

Last Thursday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed rules to prohibit dangerous class-action bans buried in credit card, banking, and loan contracts.  

Protected by “gotcha” provisions, banks and credit card companies can steal small sums from millions while preventing consumers from holding them accountable in court. This system, called forced arbitration, pits David against Goliath, and with the ban on class actions, plucks the slingshot from David’s hand.

Keep Washington Out of Texas Courts

Washington lobbyists are attacking our state courts. A bill (HR 3624) making its way through Congress would send state-based legal disputes into overburdened federal courts.

In other words, valid legal disputes over property rights, business contracts, insurance claims, and a host of other issues involving Texas citizens and businesses would be forced into the quagmire of the federal courts.

Survey: Justice for Flint residents?

Residents of Flint, Michigan are looking for justice after the contamination of their water supply. But, they may not find it. Shielded by the well-established principle of "sovereign immunity," the state of Michigan is immune to lawsuits except in a very limited number of cases. As a result, Flint residents must face enormous obstacles in their pursuit of justice. 

Tell us what you think in our survey below: 

ACT NOW: Restore Justice for Survivors of White Coat Rape

Sign the petition to ensure justice for survivors of white coat rape!

In Texas, hospitals can be accountability-free zones for rapists in white coats. 

Why the 7th Amendment Still Matters

The New York Times three-part series on forced arbitration, published last week, has sparked a debate in the media on the importance of trials by jury.