At some point, every consumer has bought something and then found themselves surprised by the hidden fees and countless documents that must be signed as part of the purchase. It may even lead to some level of buyer’s remorse. However, it is not often that buyer’s remorse gives rise to a class action lawsuit brought by over 100,000 consumers against an affiliate of one of Missouri’s largest private corporations. Consumers, such as Robert and Janet McKeage, are often forced to choose between holding retailers accountable for their deceitful practices or paying increased transaction costs when dealing with Missouri retailers. With some of Missouri’s bordering states having more comprehensive unauthorized practice of law statutes and punishments, Missouri’s General Assembly should reevaluate the state’s own laws in light of a movement toward enhanced consumer protection laws. Sections 484.010 and 484.020 of the Missouri Revised Statutes define what conduct constitutes the practice of law, who is authorized to practice law, and what punishments are levied against anyone engaging in the unauthorized practice of law. If the General Assembly does not act, retailers, such as TMBC, LLC, may be enticed to continue deceitful business practices such as profiting off of unlawful charges and hidden fees.

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