Attorney General Chris Carr is recognizing the month of July as Military Consumer Protection Month by sharing information and resources to help active-duty service members, veterans, and their families avoid scams and predatory business practices.
“Our servicemen and women dedicate their lives to defending our nation, and they deserve our commitment to helping them secure their personal and financial information,” said Carr. “Any business that preys upon active or former members of our Armed Forces will be held accountable for their illegal actions. During Military Consumer Protection Month and all year-round, we will continue to provide Georgia’s military families with the support and resources they need to avoid scams and deception in the marketplace.”
Last year, Carr announced a $34.2 million multistate settlement with Harris Jewelry to provide refunds and relief to the more than 46,000 U.S. service members and veterans who were deceived and defrauded by the national jewelry retailer. Specifically, the agreement requires that Harris Jewelry stop collecting roughly $1.9 million in outstanding debt that is held by more than 1,200 Georgia service members. The agreement also requires that the company provide over $970,000 in refunds to the more than 3,700 Georgia service members who paid for protection plans.
Unfortunately, military members, veterans and their families are often targeted by con artists and dishonest businesses. Scams and deceptive tactics in consumer transactions can hurt a military member or veteran’s personal finances, damage their credit, threaten their security clearance, prevent them from getting a job, and create emotional strain and stress.
Military Consumer Resources
The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division offers the Georgia Military Consumer Protection Guide to help active and former service members better understand their rights as consumers and how to protect themselves from common scams. The guide is free and available for download.
The Consumer Protection Division has also created the Military Consumer Protection Resource Page to provide helpful information about consumer and financial topics that can affect active and former military.
Both the guide and the webpage cover a range of topics, including buying a car, housing and renter’s rights, insurance, the Military Lending Act, budgeting and personal finance, debt collection, identity theft, scams and fraud, and the GI Bill.
Georgia service members who think they may have fallen victim to a scam or deceptive business practices can contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at (404) 651-8600 or file a complaint here.
About the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division
Last year, the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division helped 171,548 people and was responsible for obtaining more than $143 million for consumers through several efforts, including legal settlements, mediation, and administration of the Georgia Lemon Law.In FY 2023, settlements with the Attorney General’s Office resulted in payments to the State Treasury in the amount of $21,641,584.85. Additional information can be found here.
The Consumer Protection Division also continues to engage in consumer education and outreach efforts. This includes live speaking engagements, webinars and the distribution of two other consumer-dedicated guides, the Georgia Consumer Protection Guide for Older Adults and Cybersecurity in Georgia: A Guide for Small Businesses, Non-Profits and Places of Worship.