Published On: Wed, Nov 25th, 2020

Holiday Consumer Protection Guide

FL Attorney General Ashley Moody

With the holidays here, this week, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody released her annual Holiday Consumer Protection Guideto help protect consumers from scams, recalled products and more.

With so many consumer purchases taking place during the holiday season, it is a good time to be particularly mindful of potential scams, security issues and added costs that may impact online purchases. Moody encouraged consumers to take a close look at this year’s guide to avoid being targeted this holiday season. The 2020 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide is available in both English and Spanish.

“As we enter this year’s holiday season and the end of a tough year, it is important that we remain aware of common scams, recalled products and internet consumer safety. By doing so, we can protect ourselves, our families and our friends. While shopping for loved ones can be fun and rewarding, it is important to watch out for those who may be looking to prey on the unsuspecting. This year’s guide is designed to provide additional online safety tips since online shopping is anticipated to increase this year with the extra reliance on the internet as many folks may prefer to stay home,” Moody said on Monday.

In addition to information on product recalls, the 2020 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide provides tips to keep money safe while making the most of holiday shopping. The guide features safety tips for online shopping and ensuring charitable dollars do the good they are intended.

The following tips are included in the guide:

  • When shopping online, ensure that the web browser has a secure connection before inputting or submitting payment information. In the address bar, a padlock should appear to signify a secure session;
  • Keep receipts and be sure to understand retailers’ return policies and periods so any unwanted items can be returned for a full refund;
  • When purchasing gift cards, check whether there is an additional activation fee and provide the activation receipt to the recipient. Additionally, consider the retailer’s financial situation before buying a gift card; if the retailer closes or declares bankruptcy, the recipient may not be able to enjoy the card’s value;
  • Review charitable solicitations carefully prior to donating. Understand how much of a donation will go towards charitable programs, as opposed to administrative and fundraising expenses; and
  • Do not give personal or financial information to an unsolicited text, email or call from a claimed charity. if interested in donating, ask for information and pledge form to be mailed.

About the Author

- Robert Weinroth is a 27 year resident of Boca Raton where he is an attorney, businessman, former member of the City Council (where he served for four years) and currently serves as an elected member of the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners. Commissioner Weinroth went to Boston’s Northeastern University where he earned a BSBA in Management. He went on to earn his Juris Doctor at New England School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey and the Supreme Court of the United States. Weinroth served as president and general counsel of Freedom Medical Services Inc, an accredited medical supply company in Boca Raton. FREEDOMED® represented the realization of an entrepreneurial dream. Weinroth, and his wife Pamela operated the company for 16 years, eventually selling the business in 2016. Weinroth takes great pride in his past work as a volunteer Guardian ad Litem for the 15th Judicial Circuit, advocating for the needs of abused and neglected children deemed dependent by the Court. After serving on multiple community boards and committees, Weinroth was elected to the Boca Raton City Council in 2014. During his tenure, he served as CRA Vice-chair and Deputy Mayor and was appointed to a number of county boards including the Boca Raton Airport Authority, the Palm Tran Service Board, the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency, the Treasure Coast Planning Council and was elected a board member of the Palm Beach County League of Cities. Commissioner Weinroth serves as County Vice-Mayor and has been appointed Chair of the Solid Waste Authority, a board member of the PBC Transportation Planning Agency, and alternate representative on the Treasure Coast Planning Agency and several other county and regional boards. Robert, Pamela and their two dogs, Sierra and Siggy, are proud to call Boca Raton home.

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