EPF.8b Identify the role the govt plays in providing legal structure to protect
property rights and enforce contracts
EPF.10e Describe common types of contracts and implications of each
EPF.10g Maintain a filing system for personal financial records
EPF.10j Explain consumer rights, responsibilities, remedies, and the
importance of consumer vigilance
EPF.10k Examine precautions for protecting identity and other personal info
•An important economic role for govt is to define, establish
and reinforce property rights.
•Markets do not allocate resources effectively if property
rights are not clearly defined or reinforced.
•A property right to a good or serve includes the right to
exclude others from using a good or service and the right to
transfer the ownership or the use of the resource to others.
Property rights give people the right to use
their possessions as they choose (within the
limits of the law).
Property rights, contract enforcement,
standards for weights and measures, and
liability rules affect incentives for people to
produce and exchange goods and services.
Without property rights there would be little
incentive to invest. People invest in what they
own because they expect to earn a return on
that investment. So, for example, many people
landscape the lawns of homes they own, but few
landscape a home they are renting.
People would have less confidence in contracts
if there were no guarantee of enforcement. Thus
people would be less willing to trust contracts to
buy, sell, or invest. This would reduce economic
The government enforcement of weights and
measures assures consumers that when they
buy ten gallons of gas, they are actually
getting ten gallons.
A contract is a legal agreement enforceable
Examples of contracts include
movie rental memberships
cell phone agreements
online contracts (e.g., for networking space, cell phone ringtones)
There are legal consequences for failure to comply with contract
Implications and related concepts include :
three-day rescission period
circumstances requiring co-signatures
legal ramifications of adults (e.g., roommates) sharing financial
responsibilities involving a contract.
Individuals should set up and
maintain a filing system.
A well maintained filing system gives one
access to personal records when needed.
A well maintained filing system includes ease
of storage retrieval and shredding of
Manual and electronic are the primary types
of filing systems.
Systems can have
numeric, chronological, and/or tickler access.
Consumers have rights, responsibilities, and remedies.
Consumers have a responsibility to be vigilant.
The Federal Reserve System, often called the Fed, is the
central bank of the United States. The Federal Reserve
System has a number of consumer protection
responsibilities and activities.
Consumers have the right
to be informed
to be safe
to be heard
to have avenues for redress of consumer
grievances (e.g., state and federal agencies,
consumer protection laws, private groups
such as Common Cause and Better Business
Consumer responsibilities include
verifying receipts and statements
contesting an incorrect bill
maintaining consumer vigilance
safeguarding against fraud.
Remedies should include
maintaining awareness of the rights and
responsibilities of minors
contesting an incorrect bill
registering a consumer complaint.
Consumer Product Safety Act
Federal Trade Commissions Act
Pure Food and Drug Act
National Do Not Call Registry
Fair Credit Reporting Act
Fair Debt Collecting Practices Act
Truth in Lending Act
The Consumer Compliance function of the
Federal Reserve System writes consumer
protection regulations for the financial industry.
It enforces consumer protection and civil rights
laws and regulations at the banks the Federal
Reserve System supervises.
The Community Affairs function of the Federal
Reserve System promotes fair and impartial
access to credit.
The Federal Reserve System also supports
consumer protection by providing a variety of
information and educational resources.
Consumer skills include comprehending and
consumer protection laws, such as those related
to product recalls and product labeling
government agencies responsible for enforcing
consumer protection laws
private groups that work for consumer
There are various types of identity theft and methods
for avoiding becoming a victim.
Types of identity theft change regularly.
Consumers must be aware of current
methods and how to protect their identity.
Ways to avoid becoming a victim may include
safeguarding financial documents
refusing to give personal information to phone or e-
shredding documents that contain personal
using secure Internet sites
being aware of surroundings when making financial
immediately reporting theft or loss of
identification, checks, credit cards, and personal
financial documents and data
checking financial statements regularly.