Consumer complaint information revealed

WASHINGTON - Consumer protection agencies have released information regarding the top complaints from local and state perspectives.

According to a news release, cars, credit, home repair and construction have stayed on the list, but new complaints have also made their way to the list.

Auto-related complaints were the most common, followed by credit and debt complaints.

Non-mortgage related complaints were new this year, including issues with timeshare sales, resales, fraud and assisted living or retirement communities.

Also new to the list were bedbugs in apartments, internet penny auctions, gold buyers, home improvement work disguises, and scams asking for prepaid cards as payment.

The North American Consumer Protection Investigators reported that the fastest-growing complaints to agencies were in regards to fraud, debt collection abuses, mortgage and home improvement problems, and Do Not Call violations.

Likewise, the worst complaints involved mortgage issues with timeshares, home improvement, internet sales, and fraud.

NACPI cited that among the 37 agencies who participated in the survey to get these results, they received almost 300,000 complaints last year.

A total of $146,714,069 was recovered and saved for consumers from 35 of those agencies, according to the news release.

Nearly half of those local and state agencies said they were challenged by budget and resource cuts and quickly-evolving types of fraud. They also found it more difficult to deal with the increasing amount of transactions and communications between countries.

"State and local agencies are essential components of the consumer protection system in the United States," said Susan Grant, Director of Consumer Protection at CFA in the news release. "Their services save consumers and businesses money, relieve the burden on courts, foster confidence in government, keep the public safe, and help ensure fairness in the marketplace."

For more information by the Consumer Federation of America, one of the organizations that supplied the complaint survey, visit their website.

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