About reporting fraud
The Office of the District Attorney’s Consumer Protection Unit prosecutes Unfair Business Practices.
We review and/or investigate complaints involving misrepresentations and deceptive practices which occur in connection with the sale or advertisement of goods or services. If you feel you have been the victim of, or have information of, such misrepresentations or deceptive practices, please download a consumer complaint form (see download links below).
Some Tips On Preparing a Written Complaint
- First, make a separate list of the things you want to say. Try to separate your feelings from the facts. Present the events in the order in which they happened, using dates whenever possible.
- Type or print legibly in BLACK ink.
- Enclose copies of documents such as contracts, letters, advertisements, sales slips, warranties, papers or other documents that may support your complaint. KEEP THE ORIGINAL FOR YOUR FILES.
Please mail or hand-deliver your complaint. We are required to have original signatures on completed consumer complaint forms; therefore, forms must be mailed or hand-delivered to the Office of the District Attorney for processing.
Upon receipt of your complaint, we will review the complaint and any supporting documents. This review can last from two to eight weeks, depending on the circumstances, and the information you are able to provide with your complaint. After the review, this office will send you a written response. Although you may feel that you have been "ripped off," this does not necessarily mean that the business has engaged in unlawful activity which is within our jurisdiction.
We are prohibited by law from giving you legal advice, legal opinions or acting as your private attorney. If you have suffered a significant monetary loss, you may also choose to contact a private attorney to discuss your legal rights and remedies. If you do not know an attorney, you can locate one by referring to the Yellow Pages of your telephone directory or by contacting the Lawyer Referral Service of the Orange County Bar Association. If your claim is $10,000 or less, you may be able to file a suit in Small Claims Court.
- District Attorney Consumer Fraud Unit
- District Attorney Welfare Fraud Hotline
- Better Business Bureau - San Diego, Orange and Imperial Counties
The Better Business Bureau reports on business firms that can be helpful before making a purchase, provides information about charity groups and organizations, and helps resolves marketplace disputes through conciliation, mediation and arbitration.
- Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR)
BAR is part of the California Department of Consumer Affairs. The BAR registers and regulates approximately 41,000 California automotive repair facilities, and licenses smog check, lamp, and brake inspection stations.
- California Department of Insurance (CDI)
CDI oversees the insurance industry and protects the state’s insurance consumers. CDI's statewide toll-free hotline serves as an information clearinghouse for consumers with insurance-related questions or problems. The unit, staffed by insurance experts, provides immediate assistance to callers whenever possible.
- Contractors State License Board
(800) 927-HELP (4357)
Contractors State License Board protects consumers by regulating the construction industry through policies that promote the health, safety and general welfare of the public in matters relating to construction.