RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein announced the top consumer complaints his office received in 2018.
There were over 19,000 complaints submitted last year. The top 10, according to the release, were:
- Elder fraud: Elder fraud covers a variety of scams that target vulnerable senior citizens, including sweetheart, IRS, and grandparent scams. NCDOJ received 4,035 complaints of elder fraud, and $2.3 million was refunded to victims of elder fraud.
- Telemarketing & Do-Not-Call: Telemarketing issues include unauthorized telemarketing scams, charitable solicitations, and violations to the Do Not Call registry. NCDOJ received 1,663 telemarketing and do-not-call complaints.
- Motor vehicles: Motor vehicles complaints involve car rentals, buying or selling new or used cars, failures to disclose car damages, recreational vehicles, and auto repair issues. NCDOJ received 1,551 motor vehicle complaints.
- Lenders: Lending complaints include concerns about mortgage lenders, creditors, and debt adjustment practices. NCDOJ received 1,144 lending complaints.
- Home repairs: NCDOJ received 1,077 complaints involving home improvement and repair, construction, and home and lawn care.
- Price gouging: NCDOJ received 942 price gouging complaints after Hurricanes Florence and Michael and the winter storms that hit North Carolina in 2018.
- Healthcare: Healthcare-related complaints cover health services and products, as well as professional services from hospitals, doctors, and other healthcare providers. NCDOJ received 784 healthcare complaints.
- Telecommunications: Telecommunications complaints involve concerns with cellular providers and telephone utilities. NCDOJ received 701 telecommunications complaints.
- Cable TV and satellite: Our office handles complaints against cable TV and satellite service providers with a state-issued franchise. NCDOJ received 614 cable TV and satellite complaints.
- Credit: Credit-related complaints involve credit reporting, recovery, and collecting agencies. NCDOJ received 597 credit complaints.
The North Carolina Department of Justice secured refunds of more than $3.3 million for consumers.
“There are always scammers trying to trick people into sharing their personal information or giving up their hard-earned money,” Stein said. “This behavior isn’t just wrong, it’s illegal. My office will do everything in our power to investigate and resolve consumer complaints for North Carolinians and educate people on how to protect themselves from scams and frauds.”
Stein also released the NCDOJ’s 2018 annual report.
Consumers can visit the NCDOJ website to learn more about how to protect themselves from scams and fraud. Click here to file a complaint with the department’s Consumer Protection Division, or call 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.