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The Two Biggest Things You Need to Know About Proposed Changes to the Military Lending Act

The Military Lending Act (MLA), which became law in 2006, provides certain protections to active-duty members of the U.S. military and their dependents in consumer credit transactions. It is designed to prevent service members from being exploited by predatory financial products, but changes are being proposed that may eliminate some of those protections. Here are the two biggest things you need to know about Read More

Defend Your Rights: 4 Ways You Can Fight Back Against Over-Aggressive Debt Collectors

Debt collectors account for the majority of complaints made to the Federal Trade Commission every year. In 2017, consumers filed over 9,000 inquiries and complaints with the Consumer Protection Section of the Office of the Attorney General, most of them about unethical collection agencies. Consumers report incidents of being belittled, called at work, threatened with lawsuits, and other unethical practices that Read More

The Top 5 Most Common Violations of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) is a federal statute designed to prevent discriminatory lending practices in banks and other financial institutions or lenders. Applicants cannot be judged by factors other than their creditworthiness, which means that it is illegal to deny a credit application or charge higher interest rates or fees on the basis of: Race Color Religion National origin Sex / Read More

Understanding Your Rights When a Dealership or Repair Shop Fails to Provide Paperwork

A motor vehicle purchase, even for a used model, is a significant investment. To ensure that you are making a sound purchasing decision and protect your rights if the vehicle turns out to be defective, you need three important types of paperwork: The car title Repair orders/service records Buyer’s Guide (for used cars) While an honest business will gladly provide this paperwork voluntarily or on Read More

What Consumers Need to Know About Lemon Laws

When you buy a new product, especially one as expensive as a motor vehicle, you naturally expect that it will work as designed and intended. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always happen. Many consumers buy a car only to find that the cruise control doesn’t work, the air conditioner only blows warm air into the interior, or the locks are never secure. These are all problems that impair the use of the vehicle, Read More

Auto Dealer Fraud: How to Spot Illegal Advertising

Although there are many reputable auto dealerships, others do nearly anything to make money, including the use of misrepresentation and false advertising. They advertise models they don’t actually have available, list one price while charging another, or present their cars as defect-free when there has been previous damage. Below are some examples of illegal advertising and how you can spot them. Bait and Read More

Top 4 Signs of Housing Discrimination

Securing comfortable, safe, and accommodating housing is a basic human right. The Federal Fair Housing Act and the Missouri Human Rights Act both mandate that everyone has equal opportunities when it comes to housing and not face discrimination based on protected categories such as: Gender Race Color National origin Religion Mental or physical disability Familial status (includes pregnant Read More

The SCRA and Bankruptcy

The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act is a federal law that provides active-duty members of the U.S. military with important protections in civil matters. Certain sections apply even to those who have not yet been officially inducted into military service as well as reservists who have received military orders but not commenced active duty yet. With over two million American citizens presently serving in the military, Read More

Tax Season Nightmares May Not Have Ended: 5 Common Tax Scams to Look Out For

Scammers continually invent ways to steal money and personal information from U.S. taxpayers. For example, in recent years the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) has been busy investigating a widespread impersonation scam whereby impostors claim that they are IRS employees in order to extort payments from taxpayers. TIGTA estimated that, as of September 2017, the scam had generated nearly $61 Read More

Renters: Know Your Rights if You Want to Move Out

Rental leases are legally binding contracts, so breaking one is not a simple matter. Unless your landlord agrees to let you terminate a tenancy early or sublet for the remainder of the lease term, walking away from a lease can cause difficulties.  Fortunately, Missouri law allows you to break a lease under certain conditions. Let’s take a closer look at some of them: 1.   The rental unit violates Missouri health Read More