Law 101

Consumer Protection

Consumer protection laws apply to transactions by individuals for products or services. These laws protect consumers from inferior or hazardous products, deceptive advertisements, and fraudulent sales practices. Laws also protect consumer’s identity and privacy, and provide a framework for filing complaints.

Many complaints may be resolved with a letter to the company, business, or service provider involved. Other complaint may require a more formal procedure. Many types of businesses and services require government-issued licenses or permits. Complaints may be filed with the appropriate regulatory agency.

Community Resources

Document review. For Help
Better Business Bureau of Northeast California Consumer Information Center
Phone off the hook More referrals
Office of the Attorney General 2-1-1 Sacramento


Consumer protection may involve sending complaint letters to the company involved, submitting complaints to appropriate agencies, or bringing a lawsuit in small claims or civil court. Links to sources of forms for these purposes are below.

Form Resources

Court Summons Judicial Council Forms These mandatory forms can be filled out online.
Pleading Paper Cease and Desist Template
Capitol building Cal Dept of Consumer Affairs Complaint Forms
Keyboard Consumer Complaint Letter Wizard

Research Guides

The Law Librarians have created these research guides as an aid for those starting a legal research project. These guides recommend print and electronic resources that will help you find answers to your law-related questions. Many guides  provide step-by-step information, as well as sample forms, for common legal procedures.

Common Questions


The Law Librarians created these pamphlets in response to frequently asked questions on subjects not appropriate for more substantive guides.


Self-help videos from the Law Library answer common questions and demonstrate filling out forms.

Related Links

California Department of Consumer Affairs Consumer Protection
Self-Storage Self Storage Problems
ATM and Debit Card Overdraft Protection: Should You Opt In? Learn about overdraft protection and whether you should opt in or out. From Nolo.
Credit Repair Scams Ads promising a “new credit identity” are actually scams. From the FTC.
How to Get Legal Assistance From the National Consumer Law Center