Consumer Rights and Responsibilities

Knowing your consumer rights—and the responsibilities that come with those rights—is an important part of protecting yourself in the California marketplace.

Making yourself heard when your consumer rights have been ignored or violated is not only your right; it is an important part of helping other consumers avoid a similar fate. It is also an important part of forcing businesses to act honestly and ethically and to become more consumer-focused.

Following is a list of common consumer rights and responsibilities.

You have the right to: It is your responsibility to:
Keep your personal, financial and medical information private Be careful about how and to whom you make your information known
Ask informed and appropriate questions before making a consumer decision Make sure you understand the answers to those questions before making a consumer decision
Verify the license of anyone with whom you seek to do business Hire only licensed professionals
Get contracts and agreements in writing and get a copy of anything you sign Read and understand contracts and agreements before you sign them
Get contracts and agreements in your native language if English not your primary language Ask for a copy of contracts and agreements in your native language if English is not your primary language
Ask for the references of those with whom you seek to do business Call the references provided to verify their ability to do the job and their work ethic
Get cost estimates Compare the estimates of at least 3 providers
Compare product features Shop until you find exactly what you are looking for
Get a written estimate of auto repair work Ask for a written estimate of auto repair work
Return of replaced auto parts Request return of replaced auto parts when placing work order
Get a detailed invoice of work done and parts supplied Make sure you get a detailed invoice of work done and parts supplied
Compare prices Shop until you find the best value for your dollar
Truthful advertising Learn the difference between fact and advertising "hype"
Inspect merchandise before purchase Inspect merchandise before purchase
Get products that perform as advertised Following manufacturer's instructions
Get appropriate warranty protection for products and services purchased Seek reimbursement/product replacement as appropriate
Appropriate compensation if you or are injured or your property is damaged Carry appropriate insurance