Services – Consumer services – including home and vehicle repair, as well as immigration and tax services – are a frequent source of complaints. BACP provides guidance to inform consumers of their rights and protect consumers from unscrupulous business practices.
Before starting a home repair project:
- Verify that the business has a valid Home Repair or General Contractor license issued by the City of Chicago.
- Receive a detailed estimate before work begins.
- Know you have three (3) days to cancel a signed contract.
- Obtain a receipt that includes the business’s license number, contact info, and total cost of the home repair job.
- Receive the state mandated Consumer Rights Brochure.
When faced with the possibility of costly auto repair work, most consumers want to get the best deal for their money. It is equally important to know that the repair service is dependable. In Chicago, consumers have certain rights when it comes to working with an auto repair shop.
Go to Vehicle Repair for more information.
If you are involved in a traffic accident in Chicago, you may be a target for a predatory scheme called “rogue towing.” Rogue towing is when unsolicited tow trucks arrive at accident scenes and rush you into signing a form that requires thousands of dollars in payment to retrieve your vehicle.
Go to Consumer Tips for Avoiding Rogue Towing for more information.
- Tax Preparer Information for Consumers - Be careful when selecting a company to prepare your tax returns.
- Choose a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or licensed Income Tax Preparer.
- Check the preparer’s history with the Better Business Bureau.
- Know your rights by reviewing the Consumer Bill of Rights (English & Spanish)
- Be aware that prior to entering into any contract, the tax preparer must provide you with a written estimate of the total charge based upon the tax preparation services you have selected to purchase.
- Carefully review the “Income Tax Preparation Disclosure Form” provided by the preparer.
- Tax Preparer Information for Businesses
Before working with a licensed immigration service provider or “notario,” always ask to see their City of Chicago license. Know that you have the legal right to be provided the following (and you have the right to request these documents in a language other than English):
- A full explanation of the services to be performed, including all costs.
- A statement assuring you that all your documents will be returned to you upon completion.
- A statement that you may rescind the contract within 72 hours.
- A statement declaring that the immigration service provider is NOT an attorney and is NOT able to perform legal services or provide legal advice.
- A formal contract that includes ALL services to be performed and ALL costs.
- Return of your original documents upon request.