Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) is the
state's clearinghouse for consumer complaints, protection and
information and regulates various business industries operating
FDACS provides a variety of resources at
FloridaConsumerHelp.com to protect Florida consumers and
ensure they have the information they need to make informed
A to Z Resource Guide is an online directory to help
Floridians find the most appropriate government agency to
contact for various issues.
Business/Complaint Lookup is an online resource that
allows consumers to view businesses' registration and
is an online searchable database that provides consumers
with registration and financial information for charitable
organizations that solicit contributions in Florida.
File a Complaint online or request to have a complaint
form mailed to you by calling the Consumer Assistance Center
at 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) or 1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832).
- Join the Florida Do Not
Call List or report unwanted sales calls.
Request a Speaker, at no cost, for your community or
An informed consumer is the best defense against scams and
fraud. The Consumer Assistance Center
staff is available to provide consumer information from 8am to
5pm, Monday through Friday, at 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) or
1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832) or via Live Chat at
FDACS regulates all
sold by weight, such as deli meat, to ensure that consumers are
provided the full amount of what is paid for. The department has
adopted national standards established by the
Institute of Standards and Technology to insure consistency
and accuracy in measurements.
serve consumers, package labels must comply with certain
standards. Information on package labeling must be displayed
plainly and clearly, and the lettering color must conspicuously
contrast with the background color.
The required information falls into the following three
- Identity of the commodity in
the package. The product identity must appear on
the principal display panel of the package and must be: the
name required by federal or state regulation; the common or
usual name; or the generic name or other appropriate
description, including a statement of function.
- The name and place of the
business that will be responsible for the product and the
package. If the responsible party is not the
manufacturer, then the label should reveal the responsible
party's connection to the package, such as "Manufactured for
and packed by," or "Distributed by."
much of the product is in the package in terms of weight,
measure or count. This must appear on the
principal display panel of the product package. Product
packaging, referred to as "tare," should not be included in
the price of products sold by weight.
Proper packaging and consumer awareness can play a major role
in maintaining a fair marketplace. For more information about
product packaging or to file a complaint, consumers can call
1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) or go to
Student Loan Scams
of students are set to begin their first year at a Florida
university or state college, and many will use student loan
assistance. Debt relief companies often target new students with
of student loan debt relief or reduction. Students who pay these
companies frequently don't get their student loans forgiven or
reduced. Often, at best, the companies are able to put loans
into deferment while the loan's interest keeps growing. At
worst, students were defrauded out of thousands of dollars.
Before you pay a debt relief
company, watch out for these signs of a scam:
- Never provide personal
information, such as Social Security numbers or
financial information, on an unsolicited call. If you
receive a suspicious call, contact your loan servicer or the
U.S. Department of Education to verify the information.
- A U.S. Department of Education seal does not mean a
company is legitimate.
typically use official-looking names, seals and logos to
convince you that they have special access to certain
repayment plans, new federal loan consolidations
or loan forgiveness programs. If you have federal loans, go
to the U.S. Department of Education directly at
StudentAid.ed.gov to find out what options are available
- Be wary of upfront fees.
If you pay to reduce or eliminate your student loan debt,
you might not get any help or your money back.
- Scammers may promise to dissolve your loans through a
loan forgiveness program or by disputing the loans. However,
no one can promise total loan
scammers will advise that you stop paying your student
loans. Not paying student loans can
damage your credit and your loan balances could balloon,
and there's no guarantee that a company will be able to get
- Some companies may tell you they can lower your monthly
payments or interest rate by combining your federal and
private student loans. However,
consolidating federal and private loans comes with a cost.
Doing so eliminates many benefits and protections offered by
Florida's A-Z Resource Guide
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
has created the "A
- Z Resource Guide" to help Floridians find the most
appropriate agency to contact for various issues. The
"A-Z Resource Guide" is available online at
FreshFromFlorida.com. The services offered to
consumers are listed in alphabetical order, in addition
to a search function that provides information about the
regulatory agency and statutes, if applicable. This
resource guide is available in English and Spanish.
The department assists consumers regardless of
whether we regulate the specific business or industry.
If your complaint falls within our jurisdiction, we
attempt to resolve your dispute and evaluate the
business for compliance with applicable statutes. If
your complaint is filed against a business that is not
regulated by any federal, state or local government
entity, we will attempt informal mediation to resolve
the dispute. In the event that the complaint falls
within another agency's jurisdiction, we will refer it
to that agency.
Before engaging in services with a business, it's
also a good idea to research the business to see if it
has any complaints filed against it and, if so, how they
were resolved. To do this, consumers can utilize the "Business/Complaint
Lookup" feature on our website.
Click to View
Consumer Product Recalls
|The Division of Food Safety
monitors food from the point of manufacturing
and distribution through wholesale and retail
sales to ensure the public of safe, wholesome
and properly represented food products.
||The Consumer Product Safety
Commission provides consumer product recall
information as part of the agency's mission to
protect consumers and families from hazardous
The Florida Department of Agriculture and
Consumer Services is the state's clearinghouse for
consumer complaints, protection, and information.
Consumers who believe fraud has taken place can contact
the department's consumer protection and information
hotline by calling 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) or, for
Spanish speakers, 1-800-FL-AYUDA (352-9832) or visit us