Recently, the St. Louis BBB helped lead a large and integrated effort to address fraudulent business practices in the Vehicle Service Contract industry. Sometimes erroneously referred to as "extended warranties," these contracts often contain provisions and conditions that make it difficult, if not impossible, to collect on repair costs. Working with the Missouri State Attorney General, the FTC, and others, BBB's actions led to the prosecution of some of the largest marketers of vehicle service warranties. As part of its own investigation, BBB recommended the introduction of federal legislation to eliminate certain industry practices.
The Council of Better Business Bureaus (CBBB) is taking a leading role in building the work of the St Louis bureau and advocate for federal legislation. Additionally, CBBB is working to introduce model legislation based on the Missouri law to national state legislature associations. This work is important to CBBB national partners because it targets the worst cases of consumer fraud in an industry and protects the interests of those companies that follow the law and employ fair consumer practices.
CBBB continues to develop new strategies and processes to better integrate its government relations activities with local bureaus and is taking a more proactive role on the federal level to end particularly egregious instances of consumer fraud.