Consumer Protection Law in Madison, Jefferson & Throughout the State

When banks, debt collectors, car dealerships or other businesses violate your rights, you deserve justice. LawtonCates is Wisconsin’s preeminent consumer protection law firm. At LawtonCates, we represent clients in a variety of consumer protection matters.

Whether you have been the victim of fraud or are being harassed by debt collectors, our Wisconsin attorneys are prepared to step in and help ensure that you are treated fairly and your rights are protected. With two offices located in Madison and Jefferson, we assist clients throughout the state of Wisconsin.

To request a free consultation and case evaluation, call us at (608) 282-6200 or contact us online using our simple and secure submission form.

What Are Consumer Protection Laws?

Consumer protection laws shield individuals who purchase goods and services against fraudulent, deceptive, and misleading practices. The purpose of these laws is to protect consumers from abuses of power and fraud by commercial enterprises, corporations, financial institutions, debt collection agencies, and other entities. Some consumer protection laws allow us to collect exemplary or punitive damages on behalf of our clients.

Consumer protection deals with a range of legal matters, including but not limited to:

  • Breaches of consumer warranties
  • Credit reporting
  • Debt collection
  • Defective products
  • Homeowners’ rights
  • Foreclosure
  • Fraud
  • Investment contracts (securities)
  • Lending services
  • Mortgages
  • Repossession
  • Service contracts
  • Student loans
  • Car dealership unfair trade practices
  • Breaches of motor vehicle service contracts

You have the right to receive genuine goods and services that are free of defects or fraud. Faulty products and various services that fail to meet this standard could serve as grounds for a consumer protection complaint, unfair trade practices complaint, or lawsuit.

At LawtonCates, we take pride in the case results we have been able to secure for our clients. Not only are we able to hold banks, car dealerships, credit card companies, and other businesses accountable for their actions, we have secured hundreds of thousands of dollars for victims and their families.

Consumer Protection Cases We Handle

If you believe that you have been victimized by fraudulent or misleading business practices, or if you or a loved one were harmed by a defective product, it is important that you reach out to one of our experienced Wisconsin consumer protection lawyers.

These are highly complex cases with numerous required steps; by working with our experienced legal team, you put yourself in the best possible position for a successful outcome.

At LawtonCates, we handle a variety of consumer protection matters, including cases involving:

  • Creditor harassment
  • Deceptive trade practices
  • Failure to provide good-faith loan costs
  • Fraud
  • Improper credit reporting
  • Improper lending
  • Lemon laws
  • Predatory lending practices
  • Product liability
  • Product safety
  • Telemarketer harassment
  • Unlawful collections
  • Unfair creditor/bank practices
  • Car dealership unfair trade practices
  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) violations
  • Breaches of motor vehicle service contracts

We can assist you in filing a consumer protection complaint against a seller, manufacturer, business, or another entity. We also help our clients resolve disputes through litigation when necessary. We are highly respected and renowned trial lawyers, known for our aggressive approach and our commitment to securing maximum results for our clients.

Is It Illegal for a Collection Agency to Buy Your Debt and Come After You?

It is legal for a debt collection agency to buy your dent and then collect it, however they must follow certain rules. For example, a federal court in Illinois ruled recently that a debt collector’s failure to abide by the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) allowed a debtor to sue for damages.

The debtor in question had allegedly incurred medical bills as a result of a car accident. When the bills went unpaid, the medical provider hired a collection agency which wrote to the debtor. The letter did not include a warning that the letter was from a debt collector.

The debtor contacted his lawyer, and his lawyer wrote the debt collector to let them know the debtor was represented by counsel, and that the debt collector should not contact the debtor. Ignoring that, the debt collector wrote another letter to the debtor.

Under the FDCPA, debt collectors must disclose in any communication that they are debt collectors, and cannot directly contact debtors who are represented by a lawyer. The debtor sued, alleging that the debt collector’s actions caused him a loss of sleep, loss of appetite, and an inability to focus at work. The debtor also said that the action had shaken his relationship with his lawyer and that he had borrowed $1,000 to pay off the debt.

The federal court held that the debtor’s physical signs of distress were sufficient to allow his case to proceed. Under the FDCPA, a debtor may recover up to $1,000 in ‘statutory damages,’ which are damages awarded for proving a violation of the law.

Debtors can also recover any out-of-pocket losses and can be awarded damages to compensate for emotional distress. The FDCPA also requires that debt collectors pay the debtor’s attorney’s fees if the debtor wins.

If you are having trouble with debt collectors or can’t pay your bills, contact LawtonCates’ consumer protection lawyers for a free consultation.