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Resources for Consumers

Mon, 12/31/2012 - 14:30 -- crobinson
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Consumer Protection

Go to our Consumer Protection page a printable copy here.

Or for a more complete resource on consumer protection in New hampshire see the New Hampshire Consumer's Sourcebook.

See the section of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website for consumers Resolving problems - refunds & returns, and shipping & billing errors.

Privacy and Identity Theft

Identity Theft - what it is, how to avoid it and what to do if you are a victim.

Consumer.gov - avoiding identity theft, recovering from identity theft, scams against immigrants, job scams, and money wiring scams.

Federal Trade Commission - limiting unwanted calls & emails, computer security, kids' online safety, protecting your identity and repairing identity theft.

Watch videos and read articles on OnGuard Online.gov about avoiding scams, keeping your computer safe, and protecting kids online.

Download the PDF file from the National Consumer Law Center Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

Small Claims

The New Hampshire Judicial Branch website provides information on Basic Small Claims Information, the Small Claims Collection Process, and Small Claims Mediation

Cars

Many offers for cars are too good to be true. So are offers for financing them. To avoid some problems, see Working Cars for Working Families from the National Consumer Law Council.

See information on the the Federal Trade Commission website for consumers:

Consumer.gov has information about Car Title Loans.

Managing Money

Consumer.gov - making a budget, opening a bank account, using debit cards, prepaid cards, saving money when you shop, buying and using phone cards, and sending money overseas.

Learn the basics about managing your personal finances by taking the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation's online course Money Smart.

Bank accounts

Matched savings accounts - Individual Development Accounts from the Community Loan Fund provide a three-to-one dollar match and financial training to help people with low incomes save for a home, business, vehicle or education.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Safe Internet Banking.

 

From the Federal Reserve Bank Accounts and Services

Credit

From the Federal Reserve:

Consumer.gov - information Credit, Loans and Debt, includes, Your Credit History, Using Credit, Payday Loans and Cash Advances, Car Title Loans and Managing Debt.

The Credit and Loans section of the Federal Trade Commission's website for consumers covers getting credit, credit reports, credit and debit cards and loans.

It's easy to get into trouble using credit cards. Download the fact sheet from the National Consumer Law Center Your Credit Card Rights to find out about your rights.

Learn more about Credit History Download the fact sheet from the National Consumer Law Center Your Credit Card Rights to find out about your rights.

Debt

Consumer.gov -  Credit, Loans and Debt provides information on Managing Debt: what it is, what to know, and what to do.

Federal Trade Commission website for consumers section Dealing with Debt covering -Managing Debt, Credit Repair, Debt Relief, and Debt Collection.

The National Association of Consumer Advocates website has a large list of lawyers around the country who may be able to represent you or answer your debt-collection questions. They generally get their fees paid by the Debt Collector.

Bankruptcy

Federal Trade ComissionFiling for Bankruptcy: what to know.If you plan to file for bankruptcy protection, you must get credit counseling from a government-approved organization within 180 days before you file. You also have to complete a debtor education course before your debts can be discharged.

Download PDF files from the National Consumer Law Center

 

Loans

Student loans - National Consumer Law Center’s Student Loan Borrower Assistance Project is a resource for borrowers, their families, and advocates representing student loan borrowers. This site is for people who already have student loans and want to know more about their options and rights.

 

Be wary of using programs that create small or temporary loans. The National Consumer Law Council has information to protect you. Get more information here on payday loans, overdraft loans and other loans. Download the PDF file Borrower Beware: The High Cost of Payday and Auto Title Lenders, Pawnbrokers, and Rent-to-Own Stores.

Public Utilities and Energy

Trying to staying warm this winter? on a budget?  Find out if your utility is not allowed to shut off your utilities from November 15 to March 31. See Winter Disconnection rules - when it is illegal for utilities companies to shut off your services. The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission site also has information on:

 

Find out more about New Hampshire's Fuel Assistance Program from New Hampshire's Office of Energy and Planning - who can get help, how to apply and more.

The Department of Energy Energy Savers Guide shows you how easy it is to cut your energy use at home and also on the road.

Want to save energy and money? Eversource has information on: Saving Energy and Money.

Download the pdf File Saving Energy and Reducing Home Energy Bills While Staying Comfortable from the National Consumer Law Center and Dealing with Utility Companies Regarding Disputed Bills and Utility Deposits.

Help doing your taxes

New Hampshire Earned Income Tax Credit Alliance websiteNHEITC.org website is down at the minute.

See the IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service, Free Tax Return Preparation for You by Volunteers, and the New Hampshire Bar Association's Low Income Taxpayer Project.

Learn about free Tax Preparation from AARP Foundation Tax-Aide.

Older Consumers

The National Council On Aging offers information on reverse mortgages.

The National Consumer Law Center has Brochures for Older Consumers

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