Consumer Issues

Got questions about your legal rights? The Vermont Commission on Women's handbook, The Legal Rights of Women in Vermont might provide answers. Chapters include: Adoption, Guardianship and Emancipated Minors; Consumer Protection and Fair Credit; Domestic Relations; Education; Employment Rights; Housing and Property Rights; Immigration; Insurance; Name Changes; Public Accommodations; Public Assistance and Government Benefits; Reproductive Rights; Violence Against Women and Children; and Wills, Probate Court, and Advanced Directives.

 

Consumer Assistance Program (CAP)

University of Vermont
102 Morrill Hall
146 University Place
Burlington, VT 05405
(802) 656-3183 / 800-649-2424
uvm.edu/consumer

The Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) is jointly sponsored by the Office of the Attorney General and the University of Vermont to assist consumers and business owners alike with issues such as solving business disputes, identifying/recovering from fraud, and accessing helpful information and resources. Students, primarily from the Department of Community Development and Applied Economics and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, provide valuable support to the staff of CAP in responding to complaints and providing information and assistance.

Consumer Protection Unit of the Vermont Attorney General’s Office

109 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05609
(802) 828-3171 / 802 828-3665 (TTY)
atg.state.vt.us/
ago.cap@vermont.gov

The Consumer Protection Unit of the Attorney General’s Office investigates and prosecutes violations of Vermont’s consumer laws, which prohibits businesses from engaging in unfair or deceptive acts or practices. The Consumer Protection Unit carries out investigations and lawsuits against those claimed to have participated in fraudulent business dealings to promote legitimate business practices, along with offering information regarding the rules and regulations for proper business conduct.

Vermont Department of Public Service

112 State St., 3rd Floor
Montpelier, VT 05620
(802) 828-2811 / 800-622-4496 / 800-734-8390 (TYY)
publicservice.vermont.gov/

The Department of Public Service (DPS) overlooks Vermont resources (energy, telecommunications, water, and wastewater) on behalf of the public, and serves all citizens of Vermont through public advocacy, long range planning, programs, and other actions that meet the public's need for environmentally-sound, efficient, secure, sustainable, and safe energy, telecommunications, and regulated utility systems

Vermont Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board (Lemon Law Board)

Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board
14 Baldwin Street
Montpelier, VT 05602
(802) 828-2943

dmv.vermont.gov/safety/laws/lemonlaw

The Vermont Motor Vehicle Arbitration Board is dedicated to solving warranty issues for consumers, including provisions so they can file arbitration claims against manufacturers and sellers. This board serves to guarantee protection of the consumer’s rights in situations where the vehicle in question is a lemon.

Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG)

141 Main St.  Suite 6
Montpelier, VT 05602
(802) 223-5221
vpirg.org/

The Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG) is the largest nonprofit group dedicated to environmental advocacy, and its mission is to promote and protect the health of Vermont's environment, people, and locally based economy. By informing and mobilizing individuals and communities across the state, VPIRG brings the voice of citizens to public policy debates that shape the future of Vermont.

 

National Resources

Better Business Bureau

Regional Office serving Eastern Massachusetts, Maine and Vermont
290 Donald Lynch Boulevard, Suite 102
Marlborough, MA 01752
(508) 652-4800
bbb.org/

A Better Business Bureau (BBB) is an office that works to solve local disputes between businesses and consumers and strengthen the business-consumer relationship to create a trustworthy marketplace. In total, 145 Better Business Bureaus help nearly 24 million consumers and businesses each year. Since the founding of the first BBB in 1912, the BBB system has proven that the majority of marketplace problems can be solved fairly through the use of voluntary self-regulation and consumer education. The BBB's Core Services include Business Reliability Reports, dispute resolution, truth-in-advertising, consumer and business education, and charity review.

Federal Trade Commission

Consumer Response Center
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20580
(202) 326-2222 / (866) 653-4261 (TTY)
ID Theft Hotline: 877-438-4338
ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft/

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is a government organization that protects the nation’s consumers by working to prevent fraud and deception in the marketplace. This website is a one-stop national resource to learn about the crime of identity theft. It provides detailed information to deter, detect, and defend against identity theft. Consumers can learn how to avoid identity theft – and learn what to do if their identity is stolen. Businesses can learn how to help their customers deal with identity theft, as well as how to prevent problems in the first place. Law enforcement can get resources and learn how to help victims of identity theft.

Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC)

3625 Ruffin Road, #204
San Diego, CA  92123
(888) 400-5530
idtheftcenter.org/

Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) is a nonprofit, nationally respected organization dedicated exclusively to the understanding and prevention of identity theft. The ITRC provides consumer and victim support as well as public education. The ITRC also advises governmental agencies, legislators, law enforcement, and businesses about the evolving and growing problem of identity theft.

National Do Not Call Registry

donotcall.gov/

Register your home or mobile phone numbers for free and limit telemarketing calls. This registry is managed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and enforced by the FTC, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and state law enforcement officials. Once a number has been on the registry for 31 days, most telemarketers aren’t allowed to call. Exceptions are: calls from or on behalf of political organizations, charities, and telephone surveyors; calls from companies with which you have an existing business relationship, or those to whom you’ve provided express agreement in writing to receive their calls. Registration does not expire.

Credit Reporting Agencies

Central Source LLC
P.O. Box 105283
Atlanta, GA 30348-5283
AnnualCreditReport.com

A centralized service for consumers to request free annual credit reports in accordance with the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACT Act).