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Consumer Protection

  • To understand what "antitrust" law is, it helps to start with what is meant by a "trust." In the late 1800s, the famous businessman John D. Rockefeller put a number of far-reaching companies he owned under the control of the same group of "trustees" to organize the disparate businesses and gain more centralized control. Many large companies adopted this "trust" system in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the term "trust" came to be used to refer to these large companies or groups of companies. Among the various advantages of this type of business organization, the companies often controlled the market for a particular product all the way from manufacturing to distribution and ultimate purchase by the consumer. This market dominance allowed these companies to drive competitors out of business and raise prices for consumers when there was no one left to compete with them. There were famous trusts in the oil, steel, and tobacco industries, to name a few.

    Designed to alleviate the economic hardships imposed on consumers when these trusts misused their market power, "antitrust" laws were created to prevent business practices used to decrease competition in the economic marketplace. By preserving competition, antitrust law is designed to help consumers by encouraging companies to compete for our business with better products and lower prices. Today, state and federal laws continue to help ensure a competitive economy and prevent unfair trade practices.

  • In most cases, if you have a complaint about auto repairs, you should contact the Secretary of State, Bureau of Regulatory Services at 888-767-6424.  For more information on what you should do if you have a complaint regarding auto repair, please visit the Secretary of State’s website

  • If you would like help mediating a complaint with your credit card company, you may file a complaint online with Attorney General's Consumer Protection.  If any questions, call the Consumer Protection team toll-free at 877-765-8388 or 517-335-7599.

    National banks are regulated by the federal Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).  For more information about the OCC, or to get more information about credit cards and complaints about credit cards, please visit their website.

  • In general, unless a merchant gives the right to cancel in a contract, you do not have a right to cancel.  There are some limited exceptions.  For example, in the case of defective, damaged, or undelivered goods, you may be able to demand your money back.  Additionally, merchants who choose to offer you a "money-back guarantee" must live up to their promise. 

    In general, there are three categories of special circumstances under which Michigan law gives you the right to a "cooling-off period," during which time you may cancel the contract. The three special categories are:

    1. Sales that are solicited in your home, which are covered by Michigan's Home Solicitation Sales Act (three business day right to cancel).
    2. Sales where a gift was offered for attending a sales presentation, which are governed by Michigan's Gift Promotion Act (three business day right to cancel).
    3. Sales for home improvement and you agree to make payments over time to the contractor, which are governed by Michigan's Home Improvement Finance Act (one business day right to cancel). 

    For more information on whether you can cancel a contract, please see the Attorney General’s Consumer Alert entitled “Contract Cancellation.”

  • Call the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection division toll-free at 877-765-8388.  When you call, you will speak to one of our Complaint Specialists.  If you give them the name of the business, and any other identifying information you have (such as an address or phone number), our Complaint Specialists can check our database to see if the Attorney General has received complaints about that business.  They can tell you how many complaints were filed with the Attorney General, what some of the complaints are about, and whether the Consumer Protection division was able to successfully mediate these complaints. 

    You can also check online to see if the Better Business Bureau has any complaints on file regarding a company. 

  • No, but because Michigan law defines a “new car” to include a car still “covered by a manufacturer’s express warranty at the time of purchase or lease,” it could apply to a used car that meets that criteria.

    Otherwise, if you purchased your vehicle from a used car dealer, you can file a complaint with the Bureau of Information Security, Regulatory Monitoring Division at 888-767-6424.

  • There are three ways that you may obtain your free credit report.  

    Online: If you want to order your credit report online, make sure you go to AnnualCreditReport.com, and not to another website that looks similar. Identity thieves can set up look-alike websites and trick you into providing your personal financial information, including your Social Security number. To protect yourself, use the link provided on this website, or on the Federal Trade Commission website. If you order your credit report online, you will be asked to provide your Social Security number and you will be asked some questions to confirm your identity. You should receive your credit report almost instantaneously.

    By Mail: You can also order your free annual credit report by mail. To do so, you can fill out an Annual Credit Report Request Form and mail it to the address provided on the form. Consider shading the circle on the bottom right of the form so that the report mailed to you includes only the last four digits of your Social Security Number. Also, be careful when you are mailing your Credit Report Request Form and make sure you mail it using a secure U.S. Postal Service mailbox or take it to your local Post Office. DO NOT mail it using an unsecured mailbox in front of your house – anybody can pick it up and gain access to your Social Security number and date of birth. 

    By Phone: Finally, you can order your free annual credit report by phone, at 877-322-8228.  This is an automated service, however, so you will not be able to speak to anyone. 

    For more information on your free annual credit reports, please see the Attorney General’s Consumer Alert, entitled “Free Credit Reports – What Consumers Should Know."

  • You can file a complaint online or call and speak with a Complaint Specialist at 877-765-8388. 

  • Complaints against debt collectors may be filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or the Federal Trade Commission.

    If you have a complaint against a collection agency, please file a complaint online with the Attorney General's Consumer Protection division. You can also reach the Consumer Protection division by phone at 877-765-8388 or 517-335-7599.

  • To minimize telemarketing calls to your home, join the Federal Do Not Call Registry.  If you have an active email account, you may register online.  To register by phone, dial 888-382-1222 from the phone number you want to place on the Do Not Call Registry.

    Registrations should stop most (but not all) telemarketing calls within 30 days of registration and need not be renewed. 

  • You may contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection division by filing an online complaint or by calling 877-765-8388. 

  • If your phone number has been registered on the Do Not Call Registry for 31 days or more, you are encouraged to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. Report a Do Not Call Registry violation online or call 888-382-1222.  

    For more information on how to protect yourself from telemarketing fraud, please see the Attorney General's Consumer Alert entitled "Robocall and Telemarketing Fraud.

  • Visit the Michigan Drug Prices' website. This website is operated and updated by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.