In a heated dispute over how to handle a woman’s estate, the son secretly set his iPhone to record a conversation that happened between him and the other members of his family days before she passed. The stepfather tried to get it tossed out by saying it violated the Wiretap act, but the case was dismissed and also lost on appeal. This has important implications for people who are interested in recording their customer service calls. [More]
A broker who embezzled from his clients to fund his gambling addiction will be allowed to avoid the pokie and play poker instead. [More]
Suing a company in small claims court is fun and easy and oftentimes the company won’t even try to fight back. One thing you want to make sure to remember though is to look up the company’s “registered agent” in the state where you are filing. If you don’t serve this person with notice of the case, it could result in a dismissal. [More]
Sara thought she was being a good tenant. She moved cities and rather than pay the stiff penalties for breaking the lease, she continued to pay rent on the old place. She even turned off the electricity before she left. Ever since she told the old landlord she won’t be renewing the lease, he’s been going all aggro on her on the phone, demanding payments for electricity she didn’t use, insinuating she’s a criminal and is still living there, and generally being a jerk. Sara wants to extricate herself from his clutches but is afraid for her $700 security deposit. What can she do? [More]
About 10% of respondents in our informal poll yesterday about health insurance said they pay their own premiums, and according to a new poll from Kaiser Survey, three quarters of those people just faced a premium increase of 20% on average. The recent hikes have prompted the White House to say it will “sternly warn industry executives” today that insurers shouldn’t try to use the new health care law as an excuse to gouge customers, according to the New York Times. [More]
Cash4Gold supports legislation designed to regulate it and its competitors, according to a letter from the company’s president, Jeff Aronson. “Cash4Gold supports HR 4501, the Guarantee of a Legitimate Deal Act, and the provisions outlined in the bill,” Aronson wrote to two congressman who are backing the bill.
If 24-Hour Fitness kept charging even after you cancelled, you might be eligible to join a class action lawsuit against them. You can join if you were debited between Oct 2, 2002 and Feb 28, 2010. You could get $20 back, or, in a perhaps ironic twist, a three month gift certificate to 24-Hour Fitnesss.
Do you work in a corrupt industry? The Daily Beast took a look at data gathered by Transparency International, a “global anti-corruption think tank,” and put together a list of America’s most corrupt professions. Everyone may be hating on Wall Street right now, but the worst offenders according to the criteria used are utilities. In second and third place were Wall Street and telecommunications, and media came in fifth, well before banking, insurance, or retail. [More]
Better hope your technorights-based lawsuit doesn’t make it all the way to the US Court of Last Resort, because these august judges might not have a freakin’ clue of what’s going on. Turns out they don’t know the difference between email and a pager, among other things. [More]
A reader just had his credit limit lowered on a credit card due to some bad credit history that he says isn’t his. He’d like to see what’s going on with his credit report, but Equifax says he’ll have to pay for the privilege, because they have no record of any inquiries in the past 60 days. The reader asks, “Has this happened to anyone else, where a credit card company waited over 60 days to notify them of credit limit reductions? Also, does this violate the FCRA?” [More]
A class action has been filed against AT&T DSL for being too slow. Specifically, the suit alleges that AT&T set the maximum rate customers could get at a level that was lower than the advertised rate. The company denies these claims but has opted to settle instead of going to court. You’re eligible to join if… [More]
New security rules have proven too complex for Alaska’s post offices to bear, so they’re ending their participation in Operation Santa, the 50-year-old program where letters addressed to “Santa Claus, North Pole” are answered by volunteers. The program will continue elsewhere, reports the Associated Press, but when I called the USPS to find out where letters should be addressed I was told parents should contact their local post offices for information.
Rather than make up some line about needing to make sure customers receive everything they paid for, Home Depot is now openly treating its customers like shoplifters.
Here’s a new book that focuses on those random questions people always have about how the law pertains to everyday activities. You know, things like starting your own online porn site, burying a pet, or selling your ex-boyfriend’s things on eBay.
Miami Herald personal finance blogger Natalie McNeal is going all “Highlander” with her “Frugalista” moniker. As in, there can only be one. She trademarked the term and had a lawyer send out cease and desist letters to at least one other Frugalista.