Financial Protection Policy

What does consumer protection policy protect?

There are a lot of fraudulent companies nowadays, and because of that, there is a need for consumer protection to bring in the balance and security. Consumer protection laws cover a wide range from food to investments and much more. They are simply laws designed to safeguard consumers from several injustices that may occur due to money-lust businesses with no integrity.

But what actually is Consumer protection?  

“Consumer protection is, therefore, an act of protecting buyers of goods and services, and the public in the marketplace, against discriminating practices.”

The growth of fraudulent activity has also seen the establishment of several consumers organization around the globe. These organizations are the ones with oversight roles to ensure that all business meets certain stipulated measures and are operating at a fair advantage to all consumers. 

Now you know what consumer protection is, but how does it work and who does it protect? But before we check on who it protects, let understand the concept of consumer law.

The Concept of Consumer Law

Consumer protection law covers numerous topics, which include:

  • Misrepresentation: This is a part of the law that protect consumers against misleading statements from businesses.
  • Fraud: This law protects consumers who have been deprived of their legal rights, or face unlawful or unfair service.
  • Privacy rights: This law prevents government and businesses from invading consumers privacy rights.
  • Unfair business practices: Many countries protect consumers against misrepresentation, unconscionable or oppressive acts by business and encompass fraud.
  • Product liability: This is an area of law that ensure all the responsible parties that make the product available are held accountable for injuries those products cause. The main parties who are directly affected by this law include; Retailer, manufactures, distributors, suppliers and other parties that contribute to availing the products to the public.
  • Other consumers/business interactions

The part of the law that regulates the relationship between businesses that sell goods and services and individual consumer is the consumer protection law. Consumer law is also believed to be the best way than tax law in large-scale redistribution. This is because it doesn’t require any legislation an can be effective.

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How does consumer protection work?

This protection policy is always intended to protect buyers of good and services from businesses. The laws prevent any business firm from specified unfair practices or fraud that might be intended to mislead consumers or gain an advantage over competitors.

Every country has its own legislations on to which a decision is to be amended. For example, consumer protection Germany does not have a central consumer protection act. There are several consumer protection providers and to which they deliver their services throughout various legal acts.

One thing to note about the term “consumer protection” in Germany is that it isn’t a closed term. Meaning, some providers are offering Consumer protection as a by-product to safeguarding other interest. Good examples are agencies that protect other interests like road safety issues, health or environmental protection. But on the other hand, some agencies offer consumer protection services as their main service.  

When it comes to consumer protection, the EU is a very active body that influences its preceding. This is why most of the rules regarding consumer protection get influenced by EU law. This means all members states have to meet certain EU established standards that are all designed to safeguard consumers.

Essential consumer protections laws

  • Before entering a contract with consumers, the Introductory Act to the German Civil Code (EGBB) together with BGB, ensures the provision of various information duties.
  • Also, when it comes to agreeing to contracts with consumers, the use of a special type of consumer contracts and the general terms and condition is ensured to provide preliminary protections.
  • There are also regulations that prevent certain conducts to consumers, especially advertising. This is according to the German Act against Unfair Competition (UWG).

Market competition conducts are protected and regulated by the Act against Restraints of Competition.

Who does Consumer protection law protect?

The consumer protection law protects every consumer withing designed financial market, and the rule applies to all German law. But first, who is a consumer?  

According to Sec. 13 German Civil Code (BGB), “a consumer is defined as someone who enters into a legal transaction for a purpose that is mainly outside his profession, business or trade.” In other words, a consumer is a person who buys goods and services for direct ownership or use, but not for the purpose of using it for manufacturing or production or even reselling.

List of Respected Consumer Protection Agencies

  1. Australia: Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)

Also known as the individual State Consumer Affairs agencies is an Australian agency that is in charge of safeguarding consumers by exercising the regulations of financial services and products.

  1. Brazil: National Consumer Department

This is brazil’s main consumer protection agency, which is also known as SENACON. It is a federal urgency operating under the umbrella of the ministry of justice and public security. The department is in charge of overseeing all consumer protection issues, including “Procons” and federal state agencies.

  1. Canada’s consumer rights protection centres

Here is a list of some of the Canadian Consumer Agencies, Organizations, Resources

  • Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre
  • Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
  • Canadian Council of Better Business Bureaus
  • CSA Group
  • Canadian Toy Testing Council
  • Credit Counselling Canada
  • Commissioner for Complaints about Telecommunications Services
  1. Germany: European Consumer Centre (ECC) Germany

If you reside in Germany and you have cross-border issues, then the ideal place to get services will be ECC. You can get free of charge help from this agency in case you have a problem with an EU country, UK, Iceland and Norway.

  1. United Kingdom (UK): Competition and Markets Authority

UK is no longer a member of the EU, but until the end of 2020, they are still bound to some financial regulatory organizations. As of now, the consumer protection issues are being handled by the Competition and Markets Authority since 2014, which before that it dealt with Office of Fair Trading.

 

  1. United States:

With a variety of laws from both state and federal governments, there are different laws responsible for consumer protection. Among them are the:

  • Federal Food
  • Truth in Lending Act
  • The drug and Cosmetic Act
  • The Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act
  • Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
  • The Fair Credit Reporting Act
  • Fair Credit Billing Act

But there are commissions that enforce the federal consumer protection laws. These commissions include:

  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
  • Food and Drug Administration
  • Federal Trade Commission
  • S. Department of Justice

Due to many states in the US, the complexity of applying some policies is most common when you are not careful. But the good thing is, many states have chosen to adopt the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act, which has helped ease the amendment of several laws.

Key Takeaway

“There is an optimal level of intervention, beyond which the net marginal benefit of interfering with the market becomes negative. Meaning, excessive consumer protection is harmful to the market.”

As much as the government and consumer protection organization may want to prevent and intervene in every issue, there are limits they are bound not to exceed.

This simply because of one reason, which is more consumer protection and intervention on the market will have a negative impact on the market. And because of this, country’s or regional economy will be adversely affected.

Consistent economic efficiency is an ideal factor that every regulatory body, but this is mostly under competition law rather than consumer interest

Final Thoughts

Consumer security is one of the valuable practices to protecting financial market and managing the economy. This is why every country has its laws and agencies that have been put in place to ensure that every consumer s protected from any fraudulent activity within a financial market.

Consumer rights and the formation of consumer organization are both the results of consumer protection. They exist to help a consumer make the right choices in the marketplace by protecting them against fraudulent businesses and brokers. With them, a consumer can easily and effectively pursue complain against any business at any time. There several entities that promote consumer protection and most of them are governments, organizations or departments.  

But in case you get loose your many due to fraudulent brokers or businesses you can always claim for refund. We do help chargeback/reversal services, so be sure to reach out to your money back. Contact us at Trader Defense Advisory for any consumer complaints.