Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court appear headed for collision over mandatory arbitration in consumer and employment contracts.

Two actions over the last month moved the branches closer to impact: The justices agreed to decide next term whether a class action ban in a cell phone arbitration agreement is unconscionable — one of the hottest issues in arbitration. And major financial reform legislation, which would give government agencies the power to ban or limit mandatory arbitration agreements, moved into a House-Senate conference committee.