DCA – Department of Consumer Affairs

Decisions Posted on Site:
Decisions by Administrative Law Judges (January 1, 2003 – Present)

Link to Department of Consumer Affairs web site 

The New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, founded in 1969, was the first municipal agency of its kind.

The work of Consumer Affairs includes:

LICENSING
Consumer Affairs operates the New York City License Center, which issues licenses to more than 60,000 businesses in 55 categories. Businesses requiring licenses include home improvement contractors, cigarette dealers, sidewalk cafes, vendors, parking lots and cabarets. The DCA Licensing & Collections Division collects fines from licensed and unlicensed businesses that violate the Consumer Protection, License Enforcement, and Weights and Measures Laws. The division also processes licenses and collects fines for the New York City Department of Health.

ENFORCEMENT
The DCA Enforcement Division fields inspectors to make sure that the laws protecting consumers are upheld. The division enforces the weights and measures, consumer protection, and business licensing laws. The laws are enforced by:

  • INSPECTING licensed businesses – more than 100,000 routine inspections each year
  • COURT ACTION to halt deceptive trade practices
  • CONFISCATING THE VEHICLES of unlicensed home improvement contractors or tow truck operators

MEDIATING COMPLAINTS
The City fields around 200,000 complaint calls each year. When a service complaint falls within DCA’s legal jurisdiction, the DCA Consumer Complaints Division will pursue mediation between the consumer and the vendor. If the issue cannot be resolved, DCA’s administrative law judges will hear the case. When appropriate, the DCA Legal Division pursues litigation against businesses that defraud consumers.

EDUCATION AND ADVOCACY
Consumer Affairs uses the press, publications, speaking engagements, our web site, and seminars to educate both consumers and businesses about their rights and responsibilities. DCA also recommends consumer protection legislation and organizes coalitions to support these recommendations.

AGENCY-WIDE INITIATIVES
DCA joins forces with businesses, local officials, other government agencies, advocacy groups and individual consumers to tackle citywide consumer problems.

DCA’s administrative law judges issue hundreds of decisions each year. All of these decisions are posted on the Center’s website as they are issued. All decisions issued beginning on January 1, 2003 are included.