Know Your Rights

Consumer Laws You Should be Aware of

In a recent review conducted by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ("CFPB"), the agency in charge of protecting your financial welfare, it discovered that the biggest area of concern is that consumers nationwide are unaware of their rights and the numerous laws in existence that were enacted to protect them.  Below is a list of the different laws that consumers should be aware of to be better equipped to protect themselves against original creditors and debt collectors.

The Fair Credit Reporting Act ("FCRA")
This law has been in existence since 1970 and is perhaps one of the two most well recognized consumer statutes.  The FCRA states that consumers and their credit report must be safeguarded, report accurate information and must be accessible to the consumer at their request. 

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA")
Enacted in 1977, the FDCPA is the other statute most well-known by consumers nationwide.  This statute protects consumers from the unfair and harassing collection tactics of debt collectors in their efforts to collect unpaid debt. 

Equal Credit Opportunity Act ("ECOA")
This ECOA adopted in 1974, protects minorities from creditor and lender discrimination when applying for loans. 

Truth in Lending Act ("TILA")
TILA was enacted in 1978 to ensure that consumers applying for a loan were completely aware of what they were applying for.  This statute requires full disclosure to consumers.   

Fair Credit Billing Act ("FCBA")
The FCBA, enacted in 1974 is a statute that is specific to credit card holders and regulates the procedures that credit card companies must adhere to when sending bills and reporting a consumer's billing cycle.

Fair Credit and Charge Card Disclosure Act 
This statute, adopted in 1988, simply requires a credit card issuer to notify its holders of all of the features the card has to offer.

Knowing your rights and knowing that there are laws enacted simply to protect you will ensure your safety and more educated consumer is less likely to be taken advantage of.  If you are in need of additional information and need the advice of counsel, contact SmithMarco P.C. for a free case review.

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