Can grocery stores sell meat and food without a date on it?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Can a grocery store sell meat and other food without a date on it?

Online and remote eye exams

Dear Consumer Ed:  I need to get some more contact lenses, but my vision has changed since my last eye exam. I’ve heard about online and remote exams and thought this could be a convenient way to get a prescription while minimizing my risk of exposure to Covid-19. Are these exams accurate and legitimate?

Do auto repair shops have to disclose diagnostic fees up-front?

Dear Consumer Ed:  I dropped my car off for an estimate at the repair shop, and they want to charge me an $80 diagnostic fee. They never disclosed this fee beforehand. Is this legal?

Can landlord force residents to pay rent online for a fee?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, my landlord has been forcing residents to pay their rent online, which incurs an $18 to $30 fee. Is this legal?

Is it legal for doctors and pharmacies to require that I provide my date of birth?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Is it legal for pharmacies and doctors’ offices to require me to provide them with my date of birth? I’m told they can’t look up my file without it, but it seems like I’m giving out my DOB on a daily basis and I worry about identity theft. 

Camp cancelled but won't refund deposit

Dear Consumer Ed: I put a deposit down on summer camp for my kids six months ago. Now camp has been cancelled for health and safety reasons due to COVID-19, but they won’t give me a refund. What do I do?

How can you tell if a work-from-home job is a scam?

Dear Consumer Ed:  My regular work hours have been cut back, so I’ve been looking for a work-from-home job to supplement my income. I see work-from-home jobs advertised online, but my friend says most of them are scams. How can I tell if a job posting is legitimate or not? 

Is there a legal limit on restocking fees?

Dear Consumer Ed:  Is there a legal limit on restocking fees?

Extended-Stay Hotel Evictions

Dear Consumer Ed:  My family and I have been living in an extended-stay motel for the past six months. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic I lost my job, and my husband’s work hours were cut in half. We have not been able to pay our motel bill for the last two weeks. The manager is now threatening to kick us out if we cannot pay by the end of the week. Is this allowed? Do we have to move out immediately? 

Can Social Security benefits be garnished?

Dear Consumer Ed:  I receive monthly Social Security benefits that are deposited directly into my bank account.  I just received notice that my bank account was garnished by a creditor and that my funds have been frozen and will soon be turned over to the court.  I thought that Social Security benefits were exempt from garnishments of creditors.  What can I do to stop the garnishment and get access to my money?