CHARLESTON — At the end of the annual national Consumer Protection Week, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey released a list of the top eight consumer complaints received by the Consumer Protection Division for Cabell, Kanawha, Putnam and Wayne counties in 2015.
“Unfortunately, there is no shortage of consumers who feel that they have been wronged by a business,” Morrisey said in a statement. “Our Consumer Protection Division works to protect consumers from dishonest practices.”
The list is assembled from written consumer complaints filed with the Consumer Protection Division. The tally does not include phone calls from consumers who did not follow up with a written complaint. It also does not include reports of scams.
The 2015 top complaint categories for the Metro Valley were:
1. Repairs – Used Vehicles
2. Collection Agencies
4. Cell Phone Devices/Services
5. Contests—Sweepstakes & Prizes
7. Used Vehicles
8. Home Repairs
Morrisey said he encourages consumers to educate themselves about their rights and responsibilities so they do not encounter similar issues.
Nearly a quarter of consumer issues statewide involved automotive and motor vehicle complaints, also leading the list from last year. Credit complaints moved to second statewide from fourth place in 2014.
Though the list does not include scams, the AG's office says that issue remains the most frequently reported consumer issue.
Morrisey warned consumers they always should be wary if a business uses high-pressure sales tactics, refuses to put terms in writing or demands the consumer surrender personal information, such as a Social Security number or banking information.
Consumers who believe they may have been a victim of a scam or taken advantage of by a business are asked to call the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Hotline at 800-368-8808 or file an online complaint at http://www.wvago.gov.