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Forum Selection Clauses - an Argument for Their Use
To disallow the inclusion of forum selection clauses in consumer contracts would severely limit the primary means by which companies can protect themselves from inconsistent jurisdictional rules. The only safe haven is if the defending company is able to demonstrate that it would violate notions of fair play and substantial justice for the court to exercise personal jurisdiction over the defendant, but this has been rarely granted.
Various organizations are working to resolve the serious problem of Internet based jurisdiction, but currently the only way that companies have to protect themselves is through forum selection clauses. Without a forum selection clause, the problem of jurisdiction over e-commerce transactions threatens to have a devastating effect to that marketplace.The very companies most appreciated by consumers because of the variety they offer due to their lack of affiliation with international retailers are most vulnerable to being forced out of business due to the risk of the high cost of defending suits in distant fora.
Therefore, it is imperative that companies doing business on the Internet be permitted to include a forum selection clause in their contracts.…
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