What Does a Consumer Rights Lawyer Do?
Many federal and state laws prohibit businesses from certain unfair or even fraudulent practices that harm consumers. Lawyers who specialize in these laws and advocate for and represent consumers are consumer rights or consumer protection lawyers.
They provide clients with advice about what they can do in response to a violation of their consumer rights. They help clients understand if a business has violated laws or committed unfair practices. These lawyers advocate for their clients and represent them in filing complaints and starting lawsuits against businesses.
When Do I Need a Consumer Rights Lawyer?
If a company has violated your consumer rights, you do not have to hire a lawyer to represent you. You have several options, including filing a complaint with a government agency. On the other hand, the situation can become complicated, and going up against a large business without representation is difficult. Consider hiring or getting advice from a consumer rights lawyer in these situations:
- You have an issue with how your credit is being reported or errors in your report.
- Debt collectors have been harassing you.
- You are considering starting or joining a class action over a consumer issue.
- A company broke a contract with you.
- You suffered an injury and medical costs from using a company’s product.
- You have been a victim of identity theft.
- A lender misrepresented a loan’s terms or charged you more than the terms listed.
- You bought a car that turned out to have a costly or dangerous defect.
- You tried reporting a consumer issue and got no results.
These are just a few examples of situations in which a lawyer can be helpful. If you have any issues with a company, its practices, or its products or services, it’s a good idea to get advice from an experienced consumer rights lawyer.
What Are the Benefits of Working with a Consumer Rights Lawyer?
While hiring a lawyer is not strictly required for dealing with consumer rights issues, there are several reasons to work with legal representation. Many different laws could apply to your case. You may also be facing the legal team of a big company, which is difficult to do without a legal advocate.
There are several important benefits of letting a consumer rights lawyer guide and advise you:
- A list of options
Only a lawyer with experience in consumer protections knows all of the options you have under numerous laws, both state and federal. You may think all you can do is file a complaint with the state, but a lawyer will explain all the options.
- Professional representation
You can try to communicate with and resolve your issue through the company responsible, but you will likely be out of your depth. A lawsuit may not be necessary, but you do need a lawyer with experience in these situations to represent you in communications with the business that violated your consumer rights.
- A better outcome
You may be able to get a good result working on your own, but a lawyer will give you a better chance. A big company with a big legal team could shoot you down quickly, but they will take a lawyer more seriously.
- A successful lawsuit
Most consumer cases don’t get to this stage, but if you cannot get a good result from filing complaints and working with the company, you may feel out of options. Filing a lawsuit without a lawyer is too difficult. With an experienced consumer rights lawyer, you can quickly get through the process and stand a good chance of a positive outcome.
How to Hire a Consumer Rights Lawyer
Many firms specialize in consumer laws and rights. Look for those with relevant experience and individual attorneys who help clients like you. Request free initial consultations and ask important questions as you decide which lawyer or firm to hire:
- How long have you been working on consumer cases?
- Have you helped someone in a situation like mine before?
- What was the outcome?
- What are my legal options?
- Who in the firm will be handling my case?
- Do you have the resources and time to investigate my case?
- How long do you think my case will take to resolve?
- Your state bar association
- The National Association of Consumer Advocates
- The National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys
- Legal Services Corporation for legal aid based on income eligibility
- National Consumer Law Center
Working with Your Consumer Rights Lawyer
Help your consumer rights lawyer get you the best outcome by providing all necessary information, being on time for meetings, and being easy to contact. Your lawyer will need all the information about your situation and the rights violation, including receipts, contracts, financial information, and communications.
With the right lawyer and a good working relationship, you can get a good result after a consumer rights issue. Businesses are held to certain standards when working with consumers, and if they violate those, they can be held accountable.