Have you suffered due to a scam? Or do you fear that you might become a victim of a fraud? Any person who has purchased a product or service is called a consumer. A Consumer Protection Lawyer having knowledge as well as the experience of the consumer laws in the United States of America can come to your aide.
Consumer protection laws, both federal and state laws, ensure that a consumer is treated fairly by businesses. The laws seek to create a more equitable balance between buyers and sellers in the market. They also prevent sellers from using dishonest practices for sales & credit purposes and even protect consumers from sub-standard goods.
Have you been falsely accused of a scam? Even in this case, a Consumer Rights And Protection Lawyer can help you in clearing your name. The lawyer helps to protect the rights of a consumer or business mostly in civil lawsuits or disputes. However, some consumer protection laws also allow criminal sanctions.
Laws for consumer protection
The Federal and State legislatures have enacted many statutes and regulations from time to time. They have put the laws in place to protect consumer rights, and also entrusted various agencies with the task of ensuring that corporations comply with the provisions of these acts.
Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA)
The Congress passed this act in 1938. It authorizes the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to look after the safety of food, medications, medical devices, tobacco, and cosmetics.
Many things fall under this act. For example, the FDA requires consumers to get a prescription for certain drugs from a medical professional, or manufacturers to truthfully report the ingredients in their products, and many other things.
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
This federal law, passed in 1977, governs debt collection practices. It covers collections of Mortgages, Credit cards, Medical debts, and other personal debts. It imposes limitations on the debt collection tactics of the collectors.
For example, the act prohibits debt collectors from demanding money at an unusual time or indulge in harassment activities.
Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)
This federal legislation, passed in 1970, requires credit reporting agencies to ensure fairness, accuracy, and privacy of the personal information in their files. It aims to protect consumers from the inclusion of inaccurate information in their credit reports. They should also allow consumers to review a copy of their credit report for free.
It has put in place a formal procedure to dispute inaccurate information in a report. The creditor is also required to provide complete and accurate information about an individual’s payment history, investigate disputes, and resolve them within 30 days.
Truth in Lending Act (TILA)
It is a federal law, passed in 1968, aims to ensure that creditors make loans and extend credit fairly and honestly to protect consumers from getting mislead. It requires creditors to set a standardized annual percentage rate (APR) and costs associated with lending. It also asks creditors to provide disclosures about its terms and cost.
Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA)
It was enacted in 1974 with the purpose to protect consumers from unfair billing practices. It allows consumers to dispute charges on their credit cards accounts that they did not make. It provides a mechanism for doing so. The consumer can send a written notice to the billing inquiries address to initiate the dispute, and the corporation is required to investigate the dispute and also make corrections as appropriate.
Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA)
This 1999 act, also called the Financial Modernization Act, requires financial institutions to explain how they share as well as protect their customers’ data. They must inform their customers if they share the information and how they can opt out of it.
Knowing about consumer protection cases
Several Federal agencies like The Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Justice work towards enforcement of the consumer laws at the federal level. At the state level, attorney general and local prosecutors work to enforce state consumer protection laws.
However, if you are a consumer who has suffered due to a defective product or the actions of a corporation, you need not wait for the agencies to act. You can directly bring a claim or case. We can broadly classify consumer protection cases into two types:
Products liability claims
If you have suffered an injury and other losses due to a defective product, you can bring a product liability claim for compensation for financial losses, pain, suffering, etc. Product defect could be in design, manufacturing, or marketing.
Any party in the product’s chain of distribution could be liable for the defect including the product manufacturer, component manufacturer, party assembling the product, the wholesaler, and the retailer. You can take guidance from a specialized Products Liability Lawyer for your claim.
Class action cases
If you are among a group of people who have suffered the same kind of harm due to a product, you all can together bring a claim. It also helps you to save on legal expenses as they get shared within the group.
People usually bring these type of cases for defective products, consumer fraud, corporate misconduct, securities fraud, etc. A group also bring class action cases for issues such as employment practices, massive accident, etc. If you need to bring a class action case, a specialized Class Action Lawyer could aide you better.
If you are facing troubles due to a faulty product or a service not delivered as promised, you should seek the legal counsel of an expert attorney near you. LawTally helps you find the most appropriate lawyer for your specific situation from across the United States of America.
You can contact multiple top rated lawyers listed on the LawTally website before finalizing an attorney to work on your case. Our nation has enacted several consumer laws to protect you. You should not suffer in silence but bring up your claim for the larger benefit of our society.
The lawyer could help you determine if you should file a complaint with a state regulatory agency or file a lawsuit against the business owner. You can benefit by involving a lawyer in the process early.