CONSUMER COMPLAINT MEDIATION
The Office of Consumer Affairs attempts to informally resolve disputes between consumers and merchants through mediation. The mediation process begins when a consumer files a complaint with our office.
To file a complaint, you may use our complaint form or write us a letter describing your dispute and the relief you are seeking. Mail or e-mail your complaint, along with copies of any relevant documents (such as receipts, contracts or correspondence) to:
Office of Consumer Affairs
6751 Columbia Gateway Drive
Columbia, MD 21046
Upon receipt, a complaint is assigned to an investigator who reads the complaint and accompanying documents. If additional documents are needed or if the investigator has questions, s/he will contact the consumer. Once the investigator has received all of the information available from the consumer, s/he will contact the merchant to inform him/her of the complaint and request a response.
Once the investigator has received the merchant’s response, s/he will contact the consumer to discuss it. During mediation, investigators do not pre-judge the validity of a consumer complaint. Rather, they will request that the merchant provide its side of the dispute and attempt to help the parties find a fair resolution that is acceptable to both. However, they will also use their knowledge of federal, state and local consumer protection laws to ensure that any resolution is in keeping with the requirements of those laws.
If you have questions about how to file a complaint or the status of a complaint you have filed, call our office at 410-313-6420.