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Other Consumer/Finance Issues

Legal Information

Accidents with No (or Not Enough) Car Insurance

What happens if you are in an accident that was not your fault but you don't have car insurance, or your insurance isn't enough to cover the damages.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

A process called alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”) has expanded the ways attorneys can help people solve problems and settle disputes.

Automatic Payments from Your Bank Account: Know Your Rights

It is becoming more and more common to use recurring automatic electronic payments to pay bills. There are some important rights that you have in regard to recurring automatic payments.

Beware of Bad Tax Advice and Unreliable Return Preparation

Be an informed consumer when selecting a tax preparer. Going to an inexperienced or unethical return preparer can hit you in your pocket book. Filing returns with inflated deductions or credits can result in you owing back taxes, interest and penalties.

Consumer Brochures

Helpful information from the National Consumer Law Center for consumers and advocates on a range of issues from bankruptcy to telemarketing fraud.

Consumer Issues When You Don't Say I Do

A variety of issues can come up when a couple lives together but is not married. This resource takes a look at consumer issues that can arise.

Consumers and Bail Bonds

Most people spend very little time thinking about bail bondsmen —up until the moment a loved one lands in jail. In the cash bail system, where money secures freedom, some bail bond agents will go to great lengths to collect their profits. Consumers should know the risks of bail bond agreements. Consumers should also know their rights when things go wrong.

Dealing With Medical Debt

It is important to plan for medical expenses. Equally important is knowing how to deal with medical bills when you have no money to pay them.

Do You Have a Junk Mail Problem?

To receive less commercial advertising mail, you can register for The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) Mail Preference Service (MPS), which allows you to “opt out” of national mailing lists.

Do you really need a bankruptcy?

A Chapter 7 (liquidation or discharge) bankruptcy is a process under federal law designed to help people who can no longer afford to pay off the debt they have incurred and need a fresh start.

Financial Matters for Older Iowans

Many older Iowans may find themselves in unfamiliar territory when it comes to financial matters, especially after the death of a spouse who handled the family's finances.

FTC Consumer Information on Education

Consumer information for parents and students looking at scholarships, loans and choosing a school.

Funeral Purchases - Protections Under The FTC Funeral Rule

Your funeral may be one of the most expensive consumer purchases you or your family ever makes. To avoid overspending, it helps to understand your rights under the "Funeral Rule" enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (the "FTC").

Getting a Temporary Restricted License (TRL)

Many persons need a temporary restricted license (TRL) to handle life's daily responsibilities- getting to and from work and school, getting groceries and other necessary errands.

Getting the Health Care Services You Need

Has your insurance company, Medicare or Medicaid denied you help? You don't have to take no for an answer.

Help With Pension Problems

Iowa Legal Aid is now part of the Upper Midwest Pension Rights Project. The Project provides free pension counseling, claims assistance, and counseling to help people collect pension benefits and improve their standard of living.

How to Hire a Good Contractor

A good contractor is the key to a good home repair project.

How to Use Small Claims Court

A video that outlines the basic steps involved in bringing and defending a small claims action.

Important Credit Card Protections

The CARD Act of 2009 gave consumers who use credit cards and gift cards many new protections. The new law went into full effect on February 22, 2010.

Pre-Need Funeral Arrangements - Pros and Cons

There are many advantages to planning and paying for your funeral in advance. Iowa law has a number of provisions that protect consumers who make pre-need funeral arrangements.

Prescription Drug Patient Assistance Programs - Free or Low Cost Medications

Having a tough time stretching your budget to pay for expensive medications? A Prescription Drug Patient Assistance Program may be able to help.

Protecting Yourself from Telephone Marketing Fraud

Telemarketers often use illegal and deceptive practices such as contests, free prizes, sweepstakes, fake charities and other tricks to seduce older Iowans out of their hard-earned savings.

Protect Yourself with Affordable Car Insurance

Iowa drivers and owners of vehicles need to consider how damages will be covered if they are in an accident or if their car is damaged by hail, storm, or some other casualty. Here is a review of different kinds of insurance options available to Iowa drivers and owners for covering damages.

Rent Reimbursement and Property Tax Credits

Each year, Iowans who are elderly or have a disability may be able to get a property tax credit on their home and rent reimbursement on apartment or mobile home lot rent.

Report Fraud to the Federal Trade Commission (Separate Website)

Protect yourself and your community by reporting fraud, scams and bad business practices to the Federal Trade Commission. The Federal Trade Commission is a federal agency that protects consumers.

Risks of Paying Bills Online

11 tips to help you avoid potential risks when paying bills online.

Shopping for an Assistive Technology Device

When you need an assistive device, it's a good idea to be sure to get one that works well and does what you need it to do. Learning as much as you can about a device and testing it before you buy can prevent problems. It is worth the time to make sure the device you choose helps gain more independence, better health or a fuller use of your abilities.

The Basic Rules of Credit Cards

Credit cards should only be used as a source of funding for emergencies such as car repairs, or for short-term loans for large purchases only. Before using your card to make a purchase, think about where the money will come from to pay it off. All who use a credit card should know the basic rules of credit cards.

Wage Payment Collection

Are you having problems collecting wages owed to you or problems not being paid regularly? There is a law in Iowa to help you. It is called the Wage Payment Collection Act. (Chapter 91A, Iowa Code).

What To Do If Someone Sues You After an Accident

If someone is injured by a car accident you cause, what happens if you are sued?

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