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THE MIND-BLOWING TRUTH ABOUT ARBITRATION Don’t Let These Myths Cost You Thousands! JUNE 2022 GIBSONLAWGROUP.COM (817) 769-4044 DIVING DOWN WITH GLG
The average cost of a full arbitration proceeding is $30,000–$50,000 (sometimes per side ), which busts the “arbitration is cheap” myth wide open.
Let’s play “spot the truth.” Which of these four things do you think is right?
1. Arbitration is cheap. 2. Arbitration is fast. 3. Arbitration is fair. 4. Arbitration is confidential.
Myth No. 2: Arbitration is fast.
You might think that if you’re paying that much, you could wrap your arbitration up in 60 days, but that’s not true either. Because arbitrators are paid by the hour, they have NO incentive to finish your case quickly. This is the opposite of a judge who is working hard to clear 10 cases a day from their docket. Arbitration usually takes about 12 months to go to trial — court takes 18. So arbitration is fast er , but it’s definitely not fast.
You’ve probably heard that ALL of these things are true. But that’s because the media has sold entrepreneurs a bill of goods — over and over. In fact, only ONE of these things is legitimate: No. 4. (If you guessed it, ding, ding, ding! You’re a winner!) The rest are big fat lies promoted by companies who want you to waste thousands of dollars in a losing battle. But let’s back up for a second. What is arbitration? Basically, arbitration is a dispute resolution process that can solve disagreements between companies outside of court. You’ve probably seen arbitration clauses in contracts a dozen times. Everyone from Choice Hotels to Amazon sneaks them in to require franchisees and other business partners to go that route instead of taking them to court. This sounds great on the surface. We’re all told that court is expensive, right? But it’s actually a marketing ploy.
Myth No. 3: Arbitration is fair.
This is the most laughable myth of them all. Arbitration is incredibly unfair, and it’s biased toward big companies, not the little guy. Think about it. Arbitrators are paid by the hour. Who is more valuable to them: a massive company that pours millions into AAA for dispute resolution every year or your family-owned business paying $30,000 to avoid being screwed in a $12 million hotel purchase? It doesn’t take a genius to do the math. I’ve seen this play out over and over along with even pettier biases. Once, one of my clients went up against the owner of the only Italian restaurant in The Valley. It turns out the arbitrator ate at that restaurant every week. Who do you think he sided with, completely ignoring witnesses and the black-letter Texas law? There’s a reason some states and federal programs have completely banned arbitration.
Myth No. 1: Arbitration is cheap.
Going to court is the cheapest, most efficient way to solve a legal dispute. You don’t have to pay a penny for a judge to hear you out. Their salary is paid for by tax dollars. The same goes for the jury, the clerk, and everyone else who administers your case. Sure, going to court isn’t free. You have to pay your lawyer and a $400 filing fee. But it’s so much cheaper than arbitration. The minimum cost of arbitration is $7,500. And that’s just the filing fee you pay for the privilege of working with the American Arbitration Association (AAA) or a company like it. After that, you still have to pay an arbitrator for every minute they spend looking at your file. I just worked with one arbitrator who asked for $30,000 upfront for that service! Most arbitrators charge $400–$1,000 per hour. And did I mention that in arbitration, you still have to pay your lawyer?
The Hard Truth
Yes, arbitration is confidential. But unless you’re running a tech company with a proprietary algorithm and are willing to take the financial risk, my advice is this: Never, ever, EVER sign a contract with an arbitration clause. Ask to strike it out or give up on the deal all together. It’s just not worth it. Instead of avoiding court, embrace the system that our Founding Fathers created and play to win. I’ll help!
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When It Rains, It Pours A Case Drenched in Disorder
Some people love the rain. After all, there’s something magical about thunder rolling through the clouds as lightning illuminates a multitude of raindrops. Yet, if the storm is too strong — or even dangerous to be in — people might not enjoy it at all. And that certainly appears to have been the case in 1996 when an Israeli woman in Haifa, Israel, sued a television station because of their incorrect weather report. The weather forecaster, Danny Rup, predicted that the day would be beautiful and sunny, but the weather had a mind of its own and ended up being rainy, dark, and gloomy. Because the woman relied upon the accuracy of the report, she left her home without a raincoat or an umbrella and got caught in the pouring rain. As the old wives’ tale goes, if you get caught in the rain, you’ll catch a cold. Well, the woman claimed that after being exposed to inclement weather, she caught the flu and subsequently was out of work for four days, had to visit the doctor, and spent $38 on medicine. Due to such a daunting experience, she also said that she suffered additional stress from the entire situation. The woman ended up taking Channel 2 news station to a small claims court where she sought financial compensation to cover her sickness and suffering — as well as an apology from the forecaster who wrongly
predicted the weather. The woman stated that weather forecasts are legally binding.
Many of us would see this as a frivolous lawsuit, but the TV station settled out of court and the woman received $1,000 for her pain and suffering and an apology from Danny Rup. Despite this case, most people take weather predictions from television and radio forecasters with a bit of skepticism thinking that forecasts are just a well-educated guess based on available resources — and it can change on a whim. It’s just the nature of it!
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To keep yourself safe, what can be done? Of course, if you are ever in immediate danger or if someone has made a credible threat, you should call the police right away. Be sure to carry a charged cellphone with you at all times for this reason. If someone is following you, seek out the nearest safe place to go, whether it be a police station, fire station, public place, or a friend’s house. Always trust your instincts: If you feel like something is wrong, it likely is. If you feel like someone may be taking an unnatural interest in you, begin varying your routines and routes a bit. Be careful when posting on social media; don’t give out information about where you live, work, or enjoy hanging out. Lastly, try to avoid going places alone. Exercise with a friend if you can and walk to your car with a coworker after work. Stalking is a serious problem and many people assume that ignoring the behavior will take care of the issue. In most cases, that doesn’t happen. When people stalk other people, they violate boundaries in order to make their victims
cases, a victim’s stalker is someone they know or were once in an intimate relationship with. While it’s always important to never engage with your stalker, you can take certain steps to protect your safety and well-being.
First and foremost, you must know the signs and tactics of stalking, which include:
• Receiving unwanted emails, phone calls, text messages, voicemails, social media direct messages, or instant messages
• Appearing uninvited at places such as the victim’s home, school, or place of work
• Leaving strange or potentially threatening items for the victim to find
• Watching, following, or tracking a victim
feel unsafe. If you ever fall victim to stalking, it’s paramount that you take the necessary steps to keep yourself safe as well as involve law enforcement.
• Sneaking into the victim’s home or car and doing things to scare the victim or let them know the perpetrator had been there
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TAKE A BREAK
6 Gifts Dad Is Sure to Love IT’S DAD’S DAY! Dad is a very important person in your life! Every year when Father’s Day rolls around, it can be tough to come up with the perfect gift, whether it be for your dad, a new father, your grandfather, or a father figure. Getting creative can be tricky, but this list is sure to help you with an idea or two for all different price ranges! Wallet Why not go really classic and opt for a thoughtful and practical gift? Most men’s wallets see a lot of wear and tear. After all, they’re sat on, toted around in pockets all day long, and sometimes forgotten about and sent through the wash. A new one just may be in order! Massage Gun Massage guns are rising in popularity. To help Dad recover from soreness and injury or just a tough workout, a massage gun will do the trick! The best part is that they range in price, and you can even purchase one on Amazon! Apple Watch Strap Does the dad you’re celebrating own an Apple Watch? If so, help him customize it with a new Apple Watch strap. You can choose from many materials, colors, and designs so he can blend in or stand out as much as he wants. A New Cooler Men love their coolers — it’s a foolproof Father’s Day gift! Whether Dad loves to camp, fish, tailgate, go to the beach, or barbecue in the backyard, he’s sure to appreciate a new way to store ice, drinks, food, or bait! Tool Bucket Organizer Is your dad a bit of a handyman? Help him get organized and never lose track of his tools again. Tool bucket organizers come in many forms and, again, can be purchased right online, making your shopping easy! Bluetooth Headphones or Speakers If your father doesn’t have Bluetooth headphones or speakers yet, he’s missing out. The opportunity to jam out wirelessly while working out, cutting the grass, doing hobby work, or just relaxing is effortless with this thoughtful gift.
Summer is here, and you know what that means: It’s time to break out the barbecue and meat skewers! SWEET AND SPICY BBQ CHICKEN SKEWERS
• 3/4 tsp smoked paprika • 1/2 tsp salt For the Skewers • 2 lbs chicken breast, cut into bite-size cubes • 1 small pineapple, cut into 1-inch cubes
For the Marinade • 1 tbsp olive oil • 2 tbsp soy sauce • 2 tbsp chili garlic sauce • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
• 3 tbsp honey • Juice of 1 lime Directions
1. In a bowl, whisk together marinade ingredients. 2. In a reusable freezer bag, combine cubed chicken and all but 1/4 cup of the marinade. 3. Seal bag and massage marinade into the chicken. Chill in the fridge overnight. 4. The following day, preheat the grill to 400 F. Thread chicken and pineapple onto skewers, adding two cubes of chicken for each cube of pineapple. 5. Grill the skewers for 3–4 minutes per side, brushing with the reserved marinade in the final minutes. 6. Serve over rice or with your favorite barbecue sides!
Inspired by RecipeRunner.com
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE
Save Yourself Thousands — Skip Arbitration!
Woman Sues Weatherman
Sweet and Spicy BBQ Chicken Skewers Father’s Day Gift Guide
How to Handle a Stalker
Is Somebody Watching You?
When many think of stalking, the common image is likely a stranger prowling around in the shadows of the night, showing up at random places uninvited, or spying on victims from afar. However, stalking can potentially involve so much more. Stalking is menacing behavior that makes victims feel unsafe and can lead to some terrifying acts. Stalking is more common than you may think: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 1 in every 6 women and 1 in every 17 men have reported experiencing stalking at some point in their lives. For women, roughly 54% experienced it before the age of 25, and for men, 41%. Research conducted by the CDC revealed that stalking can damage its victims, leading to potential depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. It’s reported that roughly 68% of female and 70% of male victims received threats of physical harm in connection with stalking at some point in their lives.
Stalking — Here’s How to Handle It
Stalking takes place when a person repeatedly harasses or threatens another person. In most
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