Consumer Tips

Consumers face challenges from dangerous products to unsafe food to data breaches to canceled airline flights. We have dozens of consumer guides with great tips to walk you through everyday issues.

Empty wallet
Pixabay | Pixabay.com

If you have a consumer issue, we probably have advice to help you. Our consumer guides are filled with tips on a wide range of issues.

YOUR WALLET

New Year’s resolutions to make your wallet fatter and your information safer
Our consumer protection team offers some ways to keep your money and information safer in 2023.

Funeral home prices: Here’s what you should know
Federal rules are expected to change soon. Tips to understand price disclosure requirements that exist now.

Buy Now, Pay Later plans: Tips to avoid the pitfalls
Here are tips to avoid the interest and fees that often come with these “deals.”

One way to avoid higher medical bills
You probably should not sign the “Surprise Billing Protection Form”

How to make sure your credit reports don’t include paid medical debt
In 2021, medical debts in collection were found on 43 million credit reports. The big three credit bureaus pledged to start changing how they report medical debt as of July 2022.

Flyers’ rights
When your air travel plans go awry — as they so often do these days — what are your rights? We’ve got answers.

Can’t get a refund from your airline?
Most airlines are only offering vouchers, not refunds, regardless whether the flight is canceled by the airline or the passenger.

Getting ready to buy or lease a vehicle?
Complaints to regulators about auto lending and leasing have increased.

Smart money, smart kids: Tips for teaching financial literacy and privacy to kids of all ages
It’s never too early to teach children and young adults about protecting personal information, how to save up for purchases and how to navigate the adult world.

Little secrets to easily freeze your credit files
You have two primary options for freezing your credit files with the three major credit bureaus. You can do it by phone or online.

Tips for consumers expecting tax refunds
Expecting a regular tax refund or some other kind of windfall? Here are eight tips on how to make plans and avoid scams.

Preparing for a hurricane
Here are tips to protect yourself, your home and your finances

Quino Al | Unsplash.com

AVOIDING FRAUD AND SCAMS

22 ways to protect yourself from fraud, identity theft and headaches
Fraud/ identity theft is the No. 1 complaint to the Federal Trade Commission.

18 tips to reduce robocalls and protect yourself from scams, plus robotext red flags
Here’s advice to keep in mind and share with friends and loved ones.

New Year’s resolutions to make your wallet fatter and your information safer
Our consumer protection team offers some ways to keep your money and information safer in 2023.

Airplanes in the sky
Pixabay | Pixabay.com

YOUR TRAVEL

Flyers’ rights
When your air travel plans go awry — as they so often do these days — what are your rights? We’ve got answers.

Tips before you book your next airline flight
Airline travel has been unreliable for more than 18 months as the airlines struggled with staffing and logistics. Here are some suggestions to help save you grief on your next trip.

Can’t get a refund from your airline?
Most airlines are only offering vouchers, not refunds, regardless whether the flight is canceled by the airline or the passenger.

Consumer towing guide
How to protect yourself from unfair treatment

Tim Mossholder | Unsplash.com

YOUR PRIVACY

How to read a smart toy’s privacy policy
What to look for in the fine print when buying a high-tech toy for your kid

Protecting your digital privacy
Your phone and online data are often collected, sold and shared with a huge number of third party companies, often without you realizing it. We offer tips to safeguard your information.

Dark patterns: A step-by-step guide to protect your privacy on your phone
Dark patterns are one way apps and websites steer consumers into making the choice that’s right for the app or website — but wrong for the consumer.

8 ways you can be a smart consumer and also be kind to the environment
Here are some ways you can cut back on what you throw away and, in many cases, save money and protect yourself at the same time.

New Year’s resolutions to make your wallet fatter and your information safer
Our consumer protection team offers some ways to keep your money and information safer in 2023.

Smart decisions about smart toys
Smart toys can collect a lot of data about kids, increasing the chances your child’s data may be exposed during a breach or hack.

 

USP-FoodSafety-Rido-via-Shutterstock
Rido | Shutterstock.com

YOUR FOOD

Why we’re seeing new grocery shortages, and what you can do
We explain what’s going on, and offer some tips that can help you find what you need.

Tips to find out about important food recalls
We see hundreds of food recalls every year. Here are ways to learn about them quickly.

How to reduce food waste and save money on Thanksgiving dinner
Planning ahead can help.

YOUR MEDICAL BILLS

One way to avoid higher medical bills
You probably should not sign the “Surprise Billing Protection Form”

How to protect yourself from surprise medical bills
You receive a surprise medical bill when, through no fault of your own, you are treated by providers outside of your insurance network.

Why you can now have faith in good faith estimates for medical care
Here are the steps to getting a written good faith estimate before receiving scheduled medical care.

How to make sure your credit reports don’t include paid medical debt
In 2021, medical debts in collection were found on 43 million credit reports. The big three credit bureaus pledged to start changing how they report medical debt as of July 2022.

YOUR CREDIT FILES

Little secrets to easily freeze your credit files
You have two primary options for freezing your credit files with the three major credit bureaus. You can do it by phone or online.

How to make sure your credit reports don’t include paid medical debt
In 2021, medical debts in collection were found on 43 million credit reports. The big three credit bureaus pledged to start changing how they report medical debt as of July 2022.

SHOPPING

Package thefts are on the rise; here are tips to protect yourself
Porch pirates stalk neighborhoods to steal your purchases or your gifts from others.

Counterfeit products are everywhere; here are tips to avoid buying any of them online
Knockoff products can be dangerous and a waste of money.

Getting ready to buy or lease a vehicle?
Complaints to regulators about auto lending and leasing have increased.

Smart decisions about smart toys
Smart toys can collect a lot of data about kids, increasing the chances your child’s data may be exposed during a breach or hack.

 

YOUR SAFETY

Portable generators kill about 70 people per year. Here are ways to protect yourself
If not operated properly, portable generators are extremely dangerous to people and pets.

Preparing for a hurricane
Here are tips to protect yourself, your home and your finances

7 toy tips to keep your children safer
Toys may not be safe if they’ve been recalled, they’re counterfeit or contain loose parts.

 

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