The People's Lawyer Consumer News Alert
Center for Consumer Law
  Volume 61 Number 5

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The People’s Lawyer’s Tip of the Day

Do not open email attachments you do not expect or do not recognize. If you receive a notice about your account, or your order, or your bill, and you think it is an error or you may have a problem, go directly to the company's website or call them. If you get an email without a company name, ignore it.  Click here for more.

Gas Prices Approach All-Time High

In July of 2008, gas prices hit an all-time high with a national average of $4.11 per gallon. Gas prices have risen $0.20 in the last two weeks, reaching a national average of $3.76 per gallon and putting current gas prices within "firing range" of the all-time high. Some gas prices have already passed the all-time average high, including San Francisco at $4.13 per gallon. Increased demand, a weak dollar, and unrest in the Middle East have all contributed to higher crude prices. Is it only a matter of time before gas prices break the record high? Click here for more.

Obama & Boehner Reach Budget Agreement

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R) have reached an agreement on the federal budget that will prevent a government shutdown. Over the next six months, domestic agencies will lose $40 billion in funding. Although the two met halfway, the cuts still represent the largest rollback of programs in the government's history. Throughout the negotiation, President Obama worked to protect funding for education, clean energy and medical research. An emergency bill was passed just in time to prevent a government shutdown, allowing lawmakers time to draft the measure and push it through the House and Senate. The deal kept 800,000 federal employees at work. What does the deal look like? What does it mean for you? Click here for more.

Your Money

Should you sell your stock and invest your money elsewhere? Click here for more.

For the Lawyers

Company cannot force customer to arbitrate. A U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania held that a tax services company could not enforce an arbitration clause in its customer agreement when it was sued for alleged violations of the Truth in Lending Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and various state laws. The court found the arbitration provision unconscionable because it required Mr. Antkowiak to pay all costs, the requirement to arbitrate claims is unilateral, the provision contains a waiver of the right to pursue a class action, and Mr. Antkowiak would be required to arbitrate the claims in Houston, Texas. Click here for more.


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