The true cost of Abitration: for one man, it is $100,000.

No reason to bury the lead: the original amount of the dispute? Less than $150 in fees.


Back in 2010, Citibank reported Dempsey late on his payments, leading to his credit score to drop from about 700, a level viewed as good, into the 500s, or the subprime range.  What happened was he had an overdraft line of credit that was supposed to transfer money into his checking account if it became overdrawn. The bank allegedly waited until his balance was withdrawn by more than $25 to transfer the money, prompting several late fees.  After Dempsey spent several attempts to dispute, and Citibank refused to correct it, he sued.  Citibank demanded arbitration.  Now, even after spending $100,000 in legal fees and winning, the fight isn't over.  Citibank has appealed.


Dempsey may be unusual because he opted to fight Citibank rather than settle. “What I was after was to fix my credit. That’s all I wanted,” Dempsey said. “I wasn’t interested in being a crusader against Citibank.”  Now, even after spending $100,000 in legal fees and winning, the fight isn't over.  Citibank has appealed.


One man’s $100,000 journey through arbitration


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