Access to Consumer Remedies in the Squeaky Wheel System
Pepperdine Law Review, Vol. 39, pp. 279-366, 2012
Colorado Law School Paper No. 12-04
87 Pages Posted: 19 Mar 2012
This article explores the “Squeaky Wheel System” (“SWS”) in business-to-consumer (“B2C”) contexts, referring to merchants’ reservation of purchase remedies and other contract benefits for only the relatively few “squeaky wheel” consumers who have the requisite information and resources to persistently seek assistance. The article uncovers how this system fosters contractual discrimination and hinders consumers’ awareness and access with respect to contract remedies. It also adds empirical insights from my recent e-survey, and offers suggestions for using the internet to empower consumers of all economic and status levels with efficient and accessible means for learning about their purchase rights and asserting their legitimate contract complaints.
Keywords: contracts, consumer protection, dispute resolution, ADR, empirical studies, behavioral economics, e-contracts, online contracts, form terms
JEL Classification: K12, K40, K41, K00, K29, K20, K30, K10, K39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation