Consumer law — which consists of both federal and state law — is designed to protect the rights of individuals who purchase goods and services for their own use. These laws “prohibit and regulate deceptive or unconscionable advertising and sales practices, product quality, credit financing and reporting, debt collection, leases, and other aspects of consumer transactions.” Black’s Law Dictionary 220 (6th ed., abr., 1991). Consumer law is necessary because consumers often lack the power and sophistication to adequately protect themselves against businesses with relatively greater resources.
The federal government protects consumers through laws such as the Truth in Lending Act and by regulations such as those issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The State of Oregon’s consumer laws include the Unlawful Trade Practices Act and administrative rules issued by the Oregon Department of Justice.