Consumer Connections Newsletter

April 2, 2018

We're committed to providing the latest and best news and information in order to help you become a better, more informed consumer.

Whether it's a safety recall affecting your vehicle, a recall for a product in your home, or a new scam that's making the rounds, we feature it here.

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Top News

shopping cart black and white

U.S. Consumer Confidence Retreats Slightly in March Following 18-Year High Seen in February

After reaching a high not seen in 18 years in February, U.S. consumer confidence took a small step back in March. The Conference Board's Consumer Confidence Index fell to 127.7 this month, down from 130.

busy airport

Avoiding Credit Card Fraud and Identity Theft When Traveling

Have an upcoming vacation or business trip? Whether you're traveling across the state or around the world, don't forget to take the necessary precautions to protect your most important asset—your identity!

stacks of money in suitcase

IRS Has $1.1 Billion in Unclaimed Tax Refunds for People Who Have Not Filed a 2014 Return

Does the IRS have your money?? The agency says that it has $1.1 billion in unclaimed tax refunds from people who didn't file a 2014 return. The IRS says that the average unclaimed refund is $847 per taxpayer.

Other News

operating room

Get A Bigger Tax Refund: Know Which Medical Expenses Are Deductible On Your Tax Return Under The New Tax Law

If you're looking for a way to get a bigger tax refund this year, you might consider itemizing in order to take advantage of the medical expenses deduction. The IRS allows taxpayers to deduct qualified medical expenses.

spring cleaning

Clean 'Green' This Spring With Simple Homemade Cleaners

While the weather in many areas of the country remains unpredictable, one thing is for sure—spring is upon us! For many people, this means that the time to begin spring cleaning has once again arrived!

Easter lily

Easter Lilies Pose Potentially Life-Threatening Risk to Your Cat's Health

The white Easter lily symbolizes Easter and spring for many people, and is a popular decoration in homes during this time of year. But if you have a cat, you may want to think twice before having one.

house fire

Your Gas Water Heater May Be At Risk Of A Violent And Deadly Flashback Fire

Is your gas water heater safe? It's probably perfectly fine, but there's a hidden danger in all gas water heaters that most people don't know about until their houses go up in smoke. So what is the hidden danger?

credit card

The Fair Credit Reporting Act Guarantees You a Number of Different Rights and Protections

You might already know that you have a right to a free annual credit report from each of the three major credit bureaus. But a federal law, the Fair Credit Reporting Act gives you additional rights and protections.

Apartment balconies

North Carolina Tenant Rights: Relationships Between Tenants and Landlords Can Be Complex

The laws governing the relationship between a landlord and a tenant are complex and come from several different sources in North Carolina. Most disagreements occur because of misunderstandings.

Product Recalls

GTC halogen light bulbs

RECALL ALERT: 2.5 Million GTC Halogen Light Bulbs Pose Laceration and Fire Hazards

Around 2.5 million GTC halogen light bulbs are being recalled by H-E-B because they can shatter while in use in a lamp or light fixture, posing laceration and fire hazards to consumers.

eheat Envi Wall Heaters

eheat Envi Wall Heaters Recalled Due to Overheating and Burn Hazards

eheat is recalling 35,000 Envi high-efficiency electric panel wall heaters. Improper wire crimping by the manufacturer can cause the unit to overheat, smoke, or melt, posing a burn hazard to consumers.

Briggs & Stratton Simplicity riding mower

Briggs & Stratton Recalls 18,000 Riding Mowers That Could Injure Bystanders

Briggs & Stratton has issued a recall for 18,000 Snapper, Simplicity, and Massey Ferguson riding mowers. The reverse-mow option switch can malfunction and allow the mowers to unintentionally mow.

Food and Drug Recalls

Whole Foods Cary NC

Whole Foods Recall: Some Cookies Contain Egg Not Disclosed to Customers

Whole Foods Market has announced the recall of certain decorated iced cookies. The affected cookies contain egg that is not disclosed as an ingredient—posing an allergy risk to some consumers.

baking flour

King Arthur Recalls Organic Coconut Flour That May Be Contaminated with Salmonella

King Arthur Flour Company has issued a recall affecting 6,300 cases of its Organic Coconut Flour that was distributed and sold nationwide. The affected flour may be contaminated with Salmonella.

Milo's Kitchen Steak Grillers

Elevated Hormone Levels Lead to Recall of Two Varieties of Milo’s Kitchen Dog Treats

The J.M. Smucker Company says that two varieties of Milo's Kitchen dog treats that were sold nationwide may contain elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone. As a result, these treats are being recalled.

Auto Recalls

Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

Latest Hyundai Recall Affects Certain Sonata Plug-In Hybrid Vehicles

Hyundai Motor America has initiated a recall for approximately 2,840 model year 2016-2018 Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid vehicles. The Voltage Protection Device (VPD) could activate inadvertently.


Mercedes-Benz Issues Recall for Almost 122,000 GLC Vehicles with Seat Belt Issue

A seat belt issue has prompted Mercedes-Benz to recall nearly 122,000 GLC vehicles. Rear seat passengers in the affected vehicles may not be able to fasten their seat belts, posing a safety risk.

Ford logo

Ford Focus and Fusion Vehicles Recalled, Clutch Could Fracture and Damage Transmission

Ford is recalling approximately 5,360 Focus and Fusion vehicles. The clutch on the affected vehicles may fracture, resulting in damage to the transmission assembly and possibly a transmission fluid leak.