• July 8, 2017

    Courts open for business claims but closed to more and more individual claims

    Big business can get into court — individuals are forced into arbitration The public courts were available to Beef Products Inc (BPI) to sue ABC News for defamation — even the court in a tiny South Dakota town. Reports are that the South Dakota county where the case was filed spent $45,000 preparing a courtroom for the so-called “lean finely textured beef” defamation trial. That’s nice. It is not so nice that the legal system is not as accessible to an individual with a beef against a big business. Individuals with disputes against businesses are increasingly forced into arbitration — which means disputes will be decided behind closed doors usually by someone with connections to the business. No federal or state court judge, no jury of one’s peers, no appellate review, no public access for media and court watchers. Think this does not matter to you? Check your brokerage statement. Brokers require that you “agree” to mandatory arbitration if you want to open an IRA or other brokerage account. Check your internet and phone bills. Internet and telecommunication service providers require that you “agree” to mandatory arbitration if you want those services. Check your credit cards. Credit card companies require that you “agree” to mandatory arbitration if you want to use a credit card. If businesses can bring their disputes in the public court system, shouldn’t individuals be able to do the same? http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/abc-pink-slime-trial-opens-scathing-attacks-media-bias-corporate-secrecy-1010391   http://www.businessinsider.com/pink-slime-case-settlement-2017-6

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  • July 7, 2017

    What motivates a financial advisor?

    What motivates a financial advisor or anyone else? Dan Pink provides a great explanation. Hint – it is not always money. In some circumstances, offering incentive pay can DECREASE performance. Maybe brokerage firms do not need to pay commissions and bonuses to get financial advisors to perform at their best.

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  • July 7, 2017

    Charity Scams

    There should be a special place in hell for charity scammers — those people who take advantage of the best in human beings. According to the Federal Trade Commission, impostors “claiming to be with the FTC, or another agency like the fictitious “Consumer Protection Agency,” are calling to inform people they have won a huge sweepstakes from the Make-a-Wish Foundation, a well-known charity for very sick children. To get the money, the callers say, the “winner” must first pay thousands of dollars to cover taxes or insurance on the prize. The call may even come from a 202 (Washington, DC) area code to appear credible — since the headquarters for the FTC and most federal agencies are in DC.” https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/scams-name-charity?utm_source=govdelivery

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  • July 5, 2017

    Want to know if your state has a false claims act?

    Want to know if your state has a false claims act?  Check out the map available at   http://taf.org/states-false-claims-acts Thanks to the Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund for publishing this summary.

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