Ross Prosperi answers questions for a caller on the Tenant/Landlord Hotline

Ross Prosperi answers questions for a caller on the Tenant/Landlord Hotline

Protecting Consumer Rights

"The challenge is to put a lot of effort in consumer protection. If people know what their rights are, they will be protected. If they don't, they will be exploited." - Gerhard Coetzee

For over 35 years, MontPIRG has worked to put consumers in the drivers seat by giving them the tools to make smart decisions and fight back when they were being scammed.

We believe that people empowered with information about their choices as a consumers will make stronger decisions on the important decisions in their life. That is why we have successfully built a track record of helping young people and all Montanans overcome the scammers and those bend on deceiving customers.

Our most prominent campaign has been our work to protect renters and resolve tenant/landlord issues. For decades we have published our Tenant/Landlord Guide to give both sides the information they need to protect themselves and know their rights. Every week we get multiple calls from renters looking for help when their landlord comes knocking.


  • 1981 - 1986
    • MontPIRG operated a Consumer Hotline which served as an important source of information for consumer problems
    • MontPIRG was influential in passing the Lemon Law, protecting automobile consumers from footing the bill for substantial defects that the manufacturer or dealership were responsible for
    • MontPIRG combed through Montana law to create the Landlord / Tenant Guide, transforming complex legal jargon into plain language
    • MontPIRG administered and reported on surveys concerning the best banking and food services for UM students
    • MontPIRG defended consumers from explotative cable companies
    • MontPIRG represented consumers on the Citizens Utility Advocate Board
    • MontPIRG held an Anti-Utility Rate Increase Campaign to stop the state from putting the cost of Colstrip on consumers
    • MontPIRG fought a telephone rate increase
    • MontPIRG held workshops for renters
    • MontPIRG worked to include plain language in consumer contracts
  • 1987 - 1991
    • In the 1991 legislative session, MontPIRG passed a bill guaranteeing renters that their security deposits be returned in 10 days
    • MontPIRG began the Consumer Guide Campaign
  • 1992 - 1996
    • MontPIRG created a Tenant/Landlord Hotline as a compliment the Tenant/Landlord Guide
  • 1997 - 2001
    • MontPIRG continued and strengthened its Tenant/Landlord Hotline
  • 2002 - 2006
    • MontPIRG fought against Pay Day Loans
    • MontPIRG continued distributing Tenant/Landlord Guides and information
    • MontPIRG began the Credit Card Campaign, and effort to stop credit card companies from targeting students and prevent the Alumni Association from selling students names to credit card companies
    • MontPIRG worked in the state legislature and on campus to ensure tuition and college affordability
  • 2007 - 2014
    • MontPIRG fought against predatory lending
  • 2015 - Present
    • Facing budget cuts to the university system, MontPIRG sent student lobbyists to the capital to defend affordable education and revitalized its campus campaign for tuition affordability
    • MontPIRG student lobbyists fought against multiple bills in the 2017 legislative session that would restrict renter's rights and exploit tenants
    • MontPIRG student lobbyists worked tirelessly in Helena to support Net Metering and vital privacy protections