Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

Call it a sign of the times. Readers of yesterday’s blog post won’t be surprised to learn that for the second consecutive year, Washington consumers filed more complaints about collection agencies than any other industry. Our Consumer Protection Division released its annual Top 20 list of consumer complaint categories today in conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week, along with statistics showing how much money its services saved the public in 2010.

debtComplaints about the collection industry rose 7 percent from 1,795 in 2010 to 1,671 in 2009. The industry garnered 8 percent of the 22,141 written complaints the Consumer Resource Centers handled last year.

The Federal Trade Commission also released its list of top complaints today – with identity theft theft holding onto pole position for the 11th year. Debt collection complaints came in second.

Washington Attorney General's Top 20 

  1. Collection Agencies
  2. Broadband Service Providers
  3. Telecommunications
  4. Retail Sales
  5. Auto Sales
  6. Books, Magazines, Directories
  7. Commercial Banking
  8. Mortgage Lending
  9. Electronic Shopping
  10. Health Care
  11. Contractors
  12. Credit Card Issuers
  13. Advance-Fee Fraud
  14. Travel
  15. Consumer Lending & Transfer Agents
  16. Financing
  17. Manufactured Housing Landlord/Tenant Issues
  18. Auto Repair
  19. Insurance Agencies
  20. Residential Housing Landlord/Tenant Issues 

Federal Trade Commission's Top 10

  1. Identity Theft
  2. Debt Collection
  3. Internet Services
  4. Prizes, Sweepstakes and (Bogus) Lotteries
  5. Shop-at-Home and Catalog Sales
  6. Imposter Scams
  7. Internet Auctions
  8. Foreign Money/Counterfeit Check Scams
  9. Telephone and Mobile Services
  10. Credit Cards

 

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