WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) - A Purdue University professor says consumers thinking of using one of the growing number of layaway programs retailers are offering this year need to read the fine print because some layaway offerings include hidden fees and refund restrictions.
Purdue professor of consumer science and retailing Richard Feinberg says layaway plans can include sign-up fees or fees for not finishing the layaway payment. Others may have refund restrictions.
Many retailers used layaway before credit cards became common in the 1980s. Layaway allows consumers under financial pressure to afford gifts because it allows them to put merchandise on hold and pay for it in installments until right before it's needed.
Feinberg says retailers' growing use of layaway as the holiday season nears reflects the tough times many consumers are facing.
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7:30 A.M. UPDATE: Johnson County Sheriff Doug Cox reports there were 20 slide-offs and five car crashes Friday morning, including one that left someone hurt. Many counties were reporting slide-offs.
A car ended up in the water early Friday morning, as drivers tried to make their way despite snow that fell overnight.
State police are warning Indiana residents about a phone scam that has been reported in central Indiana where grandparents are swindled out of money by con artists who tell them about a fake emergency.