The North Carolina Statutes contain laws and regulations that protect consumers from deceptive trade practices, unsafe products, identity theft and other criminal activity directed to purchasers of goods and services. In fact, some laws are specifically designed to protect certain classes of consumers purchasing certain types of goods. The North Carolina Lemon Law, for instance, protects people that purchase automobiles that fail to meet minimum quality standards. The North Carolina Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act regulates how entities tell consumers about the products they provide. And the Consumer Economic Protection Act helps parties resolve foreclosure issues for owner occupied residential real estate.
Consumers are regularly confronted with purchases of goods that do not work as anticipated or advertised, and many have fallen victim to deceptive trade practices and truthful lending issues, as seen in the foreclosure boom of recent years.
Matters regulated by North Carolina’s consumer protection laws are brought in state court. Depending on damages, these claims can be brought at the District Court or Superior Court level.
As companions to North Carolina statutes, there are equally protective federal laws which also protect consumers:
- The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) protects consumers from mistaken or fraudulent credit reporting.
- The Truth in Lending Act (TILA) protects citizens from liability for unauthorized credit card charges (identity theft).
- The Fair Credit Billing Act governs methodologies for correction of billing errors and fraudulent charges on your credit card accounts.
- The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) regulates practices utilized by collection agencies to recoup debt.
- The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act governs how manufacturers explain and adhere to the terms and exclusions in their product warranties.
- The Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act (ITADA) governs filing of complaints and actions to be taken in issues relating to identity theft, as well as providing consumer education services on preventive measures
- The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CARD Act) governs when and how a credit card companies can increase interests rates and caps fees and penalties credit card companies can charge
At Ferikes & Bleynat, our Asheville consumer protection practice extends across both state and federal claims. We are experienced state and federal consumer protections lawyers and staunch advocates for our clients’ rights. Some of the matters we handle include:
- Debt Collection/Defense
- Identity Theft
- Foreclosure Defense
- Credit Reporting Discrepancies
- Unfair Trade and Deceptive Practices
- Truth in Lending Matters
- Products Liability
- Health Care Insurance Claim Matters
- Home Repair and Construction Matters
- Landlord Tenant Matters
If you are a consumer facing any of these issues, contact our lawyers for a confidential consultation. We will evaluate your matter and help you strategize the best course of action. We can help protect your rights under both state and federal law.