What are Consumer Affairs?
Consumer Affairs is considered to be a general catchall term that includes the legality that exists within the commercial market. Within the commercial market, two primary entities exist that participate in the facilitation of commerce; these parties are vendors and consumers.
Types of Consumer Affairs
However, the notion of Consumer Affairs is quite vast, which results in the topics and procedures – in addition to the focus and statutory analysis – taking place within commerce to retain an expansive nature. As a result, institutions specializing in Consumer Affairs will typically vary within nature, practice, and subject matter:
Consumer Affairs for the Protection of Consumer Rights
Within the scope of the commercial market, prospective criminal activity varying both in nature, as well as severity may take place. Consumer Affairs institutions rooted within the investigation and prevention of consumer-based crimes may undertake measures to not only report ongoing commercial crime to the proper authorities, but also provide the general consumer populace with pertinent information; the following crimes are amongst the most commonly reported by such Consumer Affairs institutions:
Fraud – namely fraud taking place within a commercial setting – is classified as the purposeful and intentional misrepresentation of a product or service on the part of a commercial vendor with the expressed intention of deceiving a consumer; within the notion of consumer fraud investigated by the vary institutions of Consumer Affairs may include product misrepresentation, false advertising, and faulty products that do not adhere to their manufacturer’s agreement
Consumer Affairs for the Prevention on Monopolized Commercial Markets
As per the events transpiring in conjunction with both the Sherman Antitrust Act, as well as the Clayton Antitrust Act, unregulated commercial activities retain the ability to drastically exploit and damage the commercial populace; the monopolization of a commercial market not only disallows for consumer agency and choice, but also may place a consumer under duress to engage in purchase – as a result, Consumer Affairs investigating and preventing commercial monopolization provide consumers with the expressed protection of rights:
In the event that a commercial operation or business endeavor threaten to encompass an entire market, which results in the prevention commercial competition, the prospect exists that consumers may engage in purchase as a result of force in lieu of choice
A latent risk within commercial monopolization – as stated by reports set forth by Institutions of Consumer Affairs, mandate that the prospect of exploitative pricing strategies, as well as the unethical control of the entirety of a market