Consumer Action Handbook

How can a person contact an auto manufacturer with a concern about a motor vehicle? Where would a person file a complaint about deceptive investments? What state consumer protection agencies are available to help consumers in Missouri?

These, and many other, questions are answered in the Consumer Action Handbook, published by the U.S. General Services Administration. Updated each year, this free reference book offers consumer buying tips on everything from consumer credit and environmental-friendly products to travel and utilities along with extensive lists of contact information for major companies, trade associations, and federal, state, and local consumer agencies.

The Consumer Action Handbook may be accessed at::

online version –

download version –

order form for print copy –

video –

Teaching Suggestions

  • Have students obtain a copy of the Consumer Action Handbook (print or PDF version) and have them select information about which they were not previously aware.
  • Have students talk to others to determine their main sources of consumer information when making a purchase or when having a consumer complaint.

Discussion Questions 

  1. Why do an extensive number of consumer problems occur in our society?
  2. Explain the actions a person might take when encountering a consumer complaint.
  3. In addition to the Consumer Action Handbook, what information sources might consumers use when planning a purchase or encountering a consumer problem?

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