No Call violations tops state list of consumer complaints

Bill Novak
The Cap Times
May 24, 2011
http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/article_2eecef18-860b-11e0-982d-001cc4c002e0.html

Getting unwanted phone calls from telemarketers is the number one complaint of Wisconsin residents filing their protests with the state, according to statistics released Tuesday by the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

This is the eighth year in a row that No Call list violators topped the list of complaints made to the state’s consumer watchdog agency.

“More than two million Wisconsin consumers have said ‘no’ to intrusive telemarketing calls by signing up for the state’s No Call list,” said Sandy Chalmers, administrator of the Division of Trade and Consumer Protection in a news release.

DATCP received 2,240 complaints about telemarketers in 2010.

The second-highest complaint was from renters against landlords.

DATCP got 1,696 written complaints over landlord/tenant issues, with the biggest problems having to do with security deposits and lease provisions.

Close on the heels of landlord problems was complaints about telecommunications companies, including phones and television, with 1,423 complaints.

“Read your phone and cable bills carefully, and question any charges you are unsure about,” Chalmers said. “Read the fine print in your contract and make sure you fully understand your responsibilities before entering into any sort of service agreement.”

Home improvements moved up one spot to No. 4 on the most complaints list.

Here’s the full list from DATCP:

1. No Call violations

2. Landlord/tenant issues

3. Telecommunications

4. Home improvement

5. Satellite dish services

6. Motor vehicle sales

7. Motor vehicle repairs

8. Travel/tourism

9. Mail order sales

10. Collection agencies

For more consumer information or to file a complaint, go online to datcp.wi.gov, by email at datcphotline@wisconsin.gov or by calling 800-422-7128.

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