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Deceptive Trade Practices laws - Information on the law about Deceptive Trade Practices

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A deceptive trade practice is an activity in which an individual or business engages that is calculated to mislead or lure the public into purchasing a product or service. False advertising and odometer tampering are two of the most blatant examples of this commercial lying. Such activities are given special status as offenses against the citizenry in general and are therefore accorded by law special enforcement status.

Deceptive trade practices result in criminal prosecution in some states; in others, statutes provide for private enforcement, whereby a citizen is entitled to sue a business for violating deceptive trade practice laws and may be able to recover punitive damages and/or statutory fines. The attorney general of the state may also bring a lawsuit against an offending business enterprise.

Because a deceptive trade practice may affect individuals or businesses from more than one state, a number of states have adopted the standardized Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act (UDTPA). The Uniform Act does not add or detract from the law of any one state; rather, it is inclusive and tends to cover, in general terms, all the prohibitions and issues addressed in state law in this area. For example, the Uniform Act prohibits making deceptive representations in connection with commercial goods. This obviously covers odometer tampering, but it also addresses all forms of deception in the marketing or advertising of goods and services. Those states that have not adopted the UDTPA have laws similar to it.

There is little controversy among the states over what activity amounts to a deceptive trade practice. However, there is a great deal of variety concerning the remedies available for the violations and who may sue for those violations. There are two main purposes of the statutes providing for remedies for businesses engaging in unlawful activity: (1) injunctions or restraining orders forbidding the continued deceptive trade practice and (2) punishment via fines, damages, and imprisonment. But because businesses are generally in violation of deceptive trade practice laws, and because it is difficult to determine whom to punish in the violating business, fines are generally the most effective method of extracting restitution.

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
ALABAMA No §§8-19-1 et seq. Yes (§13A-9-42) Private parties, attorney general, district attorney (§8-19-8) Restraining orders (§8-19-8); actual damages or $100, whichever is greater, or in court's discretion up to three times actual damages (§8-19-10); continuous willful violation is Class A misdemeanor (§8-19-12); civil penalty up to $25,000 per violation (§8-19-11) Yes §8-19-5(15)
ALASKA No; Article 3. Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Yes §45.50.471(b) Attorney general (§45.50.501); private or class action suites (§45.50.531) Injunction; $500 or 3 times actual damages, whichever is greater; treble damages or equitable relief (§45.50.531) Yes §45.50.471(b)(18)
ARIZONA No Yes (§44-1522; §13-2203); Class 1 misdemeanor Attorney general (§44-1524); No language that indicates a consumer or private party may bring an action. Subpoena; injunction, civil damages (§44-1526-1528); if willfully violated: $10,000 civil penalty (§44-1531); violating injunction: $25,000 penalty (§44-1532). Yes; Class 1 misdemeanor (§44-1223)
ARKANSAS No; Chap. 88 Deceptive Trade Practices Yes (exception for those falsely advertising unknowingly) (§4-88-107) (§4-88-111) Attorney general will bring claim, private party files petition with attorney general. Injunction and return any money for purchased good to consumer; suspend corporate charter or business permit; possible $10,000 fine per violation if violation of injunction willful; actual damages and reasonable attorney's fee §4-88-113; if willful deceptive trade practice, Class A misdemeanor (4-88-103) Yes; license may be denied, suspended or revoked for violation (§23-112-308(21)
CALIFORNIA No Yes (Bus. & Prof. §17500 et seq.) Attorney general; district attorney or other prosecuting attorney may bring suit for injunctive and civil penalties (Bus & Prof. §17535); any individual may bring suit for injunction or restitution (Bus. & Prof. §17203) Violation of provision misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in county jail not exceeding 6 months or a fine not exceeding $2500/both. (Bus. & Prof. §17500) May be both imprisoned and fined. Yes (Veh. C. §28050, et seq.); misdemeanor (Veh. §40000.15)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
COLORADO Yes; "Colorado Consumer Protection Act, an Update" (6-1-101) Yes (§6-1-105) Class action; attorney general; private citizens; district attorney (§6-1-113) The amount of actual damages, $500, or 3 times the actual damages, whichever is greatest if established by clear and convincing evidence that the person engaged in bad faith; cost of reasonable attorney's fee Yes (§42-6-202)
CONNECTICUT Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (§§42-110a to 42-110q; 42-144 to 42-149) None generally but §42-110b describes "unfair or deceptive acts" in trade, defined as including advertising by §42-110a(4) Private parties; attorney general; class action; Commissioner of Consumer Protection (§§42-110d, g) Willful violation: $5,000 for each offense; costs; attorney's fees; injunctive or equitable relief; punitive damages Yes (§14-106b); class A misdemeanor
DELAWARE Yes (Tit. 6 §§2531, et seq.) Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act (6 §2536) Yes (Tit. 6 §2532) Attorney general and victims of deceptive trade practices (6 §2522) Service in accordance with 6 §2514 Violation of Tit.6 §2501 is $100 (Tit. 6 §2503); not more than $10,000 for each willful violation, enjoin practice or other appropriate relief (Tit. 6 §§2522 to 2524); actual damages (Tit. 6 §2524); treble damages (Tit. 6 §2533[c]); injunction, attorney's fees (Tit. 6 §2533) Yes (Tit. 21 §§6401, 6404)
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA Yes (§28-3904) Yes (§28-3904) Director of Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs; consumer (§28-3905) Appropriate civil penalties: injunction, actual and treble damages, attorney's fees; consumer redress remedies; punitive damages (§28-3905) No

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
FLORIDA No (§§501.201, et seq.) Florida Deceptive & Unfair Trade Practices Act Yes Enforcing authority for specific industry; consumer in private action §501.203 False advertising: 2nd degree misdemeanor (§817.45); food: 2nd degree misdemeanor (§500.177); actual damages if in bad faith; injunction; declatory judgment that act is violation (§501.207). Damages vary based on industry where deceptive trade practice is used. Generally false advertising is a 2nd degree misdemeanor; willful unfair trade practices in any industry may result in up to $10,000 civil penalty for each violation; reasonable attorney's fees and costs (§501.2075) Yes; 3rd degree felony (§319.35)
GEORGIA Yes (§10-1-370 to 375; 390 to 407) Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Yes (§§10-1-420, 421) Administrator; private party (§§10-1-397, 398) Misdemeanor (§10-1-420); civil penalty $25,000 (10-1-405); enjoining practices (§10-1-423); exemplary damages for intentional violation, limited to actual damages if bona fide error (§10-1-399, 400); fine over $100 but less than $1,000 or prison for up to 20 days or both (§10-1-421); exception for ignorance (§10-1-396) Yes (§40-8-5); violator liable for three times actual damages or $1,500, whichever is greater, costs and attorney's fees
HAWAII Yes (§481A) Uniform Deceptive Trade Practice Act Yes (§481A-3; 708.871 Criminal Code) false advertising misdemeanor Consumer Protection Agency (§487); private parties (§481A-4) Injunction; costs to prevailing party; attorney's fees (481A-4); false advertising misdemeanor Yes (§486-77)(1) and (4)
IDAHO Yes (§48-601) Idaho Consumer Protection Act Yes (48-603) State (48-606); private party (48-608) Declaratory judgment, enjoining practices, specific performance, civil penalties up to $5,000, recover reasonable costs, investigative expenses, and attorney's fees (48-606 and 607); in private action recover actual damages or $1,000 whichever is greater, costs, and attorney's fees (48-608). Yes (§49-1629); purchaser of vehicle could bring action and recover court costs and attorney's fees (49-1630)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
ILLINOIS Yes (§815 ILCS 510/1 et seq.) Yes; (§815 ILCS 510/2) State attorney or attorney general may enjoin; private party (815 ILCS 510/3 Injunctive relief, costs or attorney's fees (815 ILCS 510/3) Yes; Class A misdemeanor (§720 ILCS 5/17-11)
INDIANA No (§24-5-0.5-1 to 10) Yes; (§35-43-5-3) Consumer or consumer class; attorney general (§24-5-0.5-4) Actual damages; attorney's fees; attorney general may seek injunction, costs and up to $15,000 for violating injunction (§24-5-0.5-4); penalty up to $500 for incurable deceptive act (§24-5-0.5-8). Class A misdemeanor (§35-43-5-3) Yes (§9-19-9-2); Class D felony
IOWA No. Consumer fraud (§714.16) Yes §714.16; §126.16 defines false advertising Attorney general and by civil action Temporary restraining order; preliminary injunction; permanent injunction; civil penalty not to exceed $40,000; up to $5,000 per day for violation of temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction or injunction; costs of court, investigation, reasonable attorney's fees (714.16) Yes (§321.71)
KANSAS No; Kansas Consumer Protection Act §50-623, et seq. Yes (§50-626) Attorney general or any other city or district attorney §50-632; consumer §50-634 Obtain declaratory or injunctive relief; reasonable expenses and investigation fees (50-632); individual may receive attorney's fees (§50-634); civil penalty not more than $20,000 (§50-634) Yes §21-3757 injured customer may void sale and recover penalties and attorney's fees based on 15 U.S.C. §§1981, et seq.
KENTUCKY No. Consumer Protection Act (§367.010 et seq.) Yes (§367.170) Attorney general, consumer (§§367.190, 367.220) Injunction; restraining order (367.190); reasonable attorney's fees (367.220); guilty of misdemeanor, fined not less than $100 but not more than $500, imprisoned for no longer than 12 months, or some combination of both (368.990) Yes; license may be revoked and civil penalties of $5,000 per violation (§367.990; 190.270)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
LOUISIANA Yes (51:1401-1418) Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law Yes advertisements, untrue or misleading, prohibited. (51:411) Attorney general (§51:1404); individual who has suffered ascertainable loss (§51:1409) Actual damages, and if willful, violator must pay treble damages plus attorneys fees and costs; injunctive relief (§51:407); additional relief as necessary to compensate (§§51:1408, 51:1409) Yes; misdemeanor with fine up to $500 and/or up to 90 days prison (32 §726.1)
MAINE Yes (Tit. 10 §§1211 to 1216; Tit. 5 §§206 to 214) Unlawful (Tit. 10 §1212) Attorney general, person likely to be damaged by practice (Tit. 10 §1213) and (Tit. 5 §209 & 5 §213) Injunction, possible to get attorney's fees and costs; also available are common law and other statutory remedies (Tit. 10 §1213) (Tit. 5 §213) Yes (Tit. 29A §2106); class D offense
MARYLAND No (Com. Law §§13-301, et seq.) Yes (Com. Law §13-301) Consumer Protection Division; attorney general; consumer (Com. Law §13-401) Fine up to $1,000; injunction; actual damages; possibly attorney's fees (Com. Law §§13-401, et seq.) misdemeanor $1,000 and/or up to 12 months in jail (Com. Law §13-411) Yes (Transp. 22 §415)
MASSACHUSETTS Yes (Ch.93A §21) Unlawful (Ch. 93A §2); (Ch. 266 §91, et seq.) Attorney general; private parties (Ch. 93A §9) Injunction, double or treble damages, attorney's fees and costs (Ch. 93A §11) Yes, liable for three times actual damages or $1,500, whichever is greater; attorney's fees; (Ch. 266 §141A) criminal penalty of $500 to $1000 and 30 days to 2 yrs. imprisonment
MICHIGAN No (§§445.901 to 922) Michigan Consumer Protection Act Yes (§445.903) Attorney general, prosecuting attorney, or private citizen; class action by attorney general (§445.910) Injunction; actual damages or $250.00 whichever is greater, plus attorney's fees; persistent and knowing violation $25,000 (§445.905.911) Yes; three times amount of actual damages or $1,500 whichever is greater, cost of action and attorney's fees. (§257.233a)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
MINNESOTA Yes (§§325D.43-48) Yes (§325 D.44) Attorney general, county attorney (§325 F.70); any person likely to be damaged (§325 D.45) Injunction (§325 F.70); court costs, attorney's fees (§325 D.45) Yes (§325 E.14); Gross misdemeanor, actual damages, costs and disbursements, attorney's fees; court has discretion to award an amount for damages not to exceed three times active damages or $1,500, whichever is greater. (§325 E.16)
MISSISSIPPI Yes; (§§75-24-1, et seq.) Yes (§75-24-5) Attorney general, district attorney, county attorneys; injured consumers; no class actions (§75-24-15) Restoration of money or property (§75-24-11): civil penalty up to $10,000 for willful violations; individual may recovery attorney's fees; injunction (§75-24-19); misdemeanor: fined up to $1,000 (§75-24-20) Yes (§63-7-203); violation is misdemeanor and punishable by fine up to $500 and/or prison up to 6 months (§63-7-209)
MISSOURI No (§407.010 to 407.130) Yes (§407.020) Consumer, class action (§407.025) attorney general (§407.100) For false advertising: court may award punitives, attorney's fees, injunction (§407.025) restitution civil penalty not more than $1,000 (§407.100) misdemeanor penalty (§§570.160.170) Yes; (§407.511 et seq.); treble damages or $2,500 whichever is greater and attorney's fees (§407.546); injunction (§407.551); odometer fraud in the first degree is a Class A misdemeanor (§407.516); in the second degree, Class D felony (§407.521); in the third degree is a Class C misdemeanor (§407.526)
MONTANA No, Montana Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act of 1973 (§§30-14-101 to 224) Yes (§30-14-103) County attorney; attorney general; individuals but not class actions (§30-14-121) dept. of commerce (§30-14-111) Recovery of out-of-pocket losses (§30-14-132); the greater of $500 or actual damages, treble damages; reasonable attorney's fees; injunction (§30-14-133) Yes (§61-3-607); fine up to $5,000 and/or prison up to 10 years; motor vehicle dealer revocation of license

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
NEBRASKA Yes with modifications (§§87-301 to 306) Yes (§87-302) Person likely to be damaged (§87-303); attorney general (§87-303.02) Criminal penalties for violating Act; costs, perhaps attorney's fees, plus other common law and statutory remedies (§87-303); injunction; civil penalty up to $2,000 for each violation (§87-303.11) Yes (§60-132)
NEVADA Revised Uniform Act adopted with significant variations (§§598.0903 to 598.0925) Yes (§598.0915, 207.171) Attorney General; consumer advocate; consumer if he is victim of deceptive trade practice (§§41.600; 598.0963) district attorney (§207.174) Injunctions; return of money or property; penalties up to $10,000 for each violation possible and willful violation is misdemeanor, second is gross misdemeanor, third is a felony; suspension of right to conduct business or dissolution of corporation possible (§598.0999); criminal and civil penalties (§§207.174 and 175); damages, attorney's fees, and costs (§41.600) Yes (§484.6062); tamperer is guilty of misdemeanor; person selling a tampered-with vehicle guilty of gross misdemeanor (484.6067)
NEW HAMPSHIRE Yes (§358A:2 et seq.) Yes (§358A:2) Attorney General, consumer protection (§358A:4); private actions (§358A:10), class actions (§358A:10a) Misdemeanor penalty (§358A:6); injunctive; equitable relief; attorney's fees; actual damages or $1,000 whichever is greater; willful violation up to treble damages not less than double damages (§358A:10); state civil penalties up to $10,000 per violation (§358A:4) Yes (§262.17) first offense misdemeanor, 2nd offense Class B felony
NEW JERSEY No (§§56:8-1, et seq.) Yes (§56:8-2) Attorney general, private party (§56.8-10, 11) Penalty as Attorney General deems proper (§56.8-3.1); injunction; penalty up to $7,500 for first offense and $15,000 for second (§56:8-13) attorney general may recover costs of suit in an action maintained by the state (§56:8-11); senior citizens receive twice the amount or value (§56:8-14) Yes (§2C:21-8)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
NEW MEXICO Yes (§§57-12-1, et seq.) Yes (§§57-15-1,2) Attorney general (§§57-15-6, 8) and any private person likely to be damaged (§57-12-10); district attorney (§57-15-5) Injunctive relief, actual damages or $100 whichever is greater, $300 or treble damages whichever is greater, attorney's fees and costs (§57-12-10); civil penalty (§57-12-11); false advertising civil penalty not to exceed $500 (§57-15-4) Yes (§57-12-6); misdemeanor and three times actual damages
NEW YORK No; Consumer Protection From Deceptive Acts and Practices (§349-350-e) Yes (Gen. Bus. §350) Attorney general (Gen. Bus. §350-d); private litigation (Gen. Bus. §350-e) for party injured Three times actual damages up to $1,000 for willful violations, attorneys fees (§350-e) Yes (Gen. Bus. §392-e), misdemeanor
NORTH CAROLINA No Yes (§§75-1.1; 75-29) Attorney general; consumer (§§75-15.2, 16) Civil penalties: up to $5,000 (§75-15.2); treble damages for one injured (§75-16); attorney's fees (§75-16.1) Yes (§20-343)
NORTH DAKOTA No; Unfair Trade Practices Law (§51-10-01 et seq.) Yes (§§51-12-01; 51-12-08) Attorney general, state's attorney (§§51-10-05.1, 51-12-14) any person damaged (§51-10-6) False advertising is a Class B misdemeanor (§51-12-13); injunction (§§51-10-06, 51-12-14) Yes; violation is a Class C felony if prior conviction; otherwise Class B misdemeanor (§39-21-51)
OHIO Adopted with modifications (Ch. 4165); (overlaps with Uniform Consumer Sales Practice Act (§1345.01-13) Yes (§4165.02) Attorney general; class actions; person likely to be damaged (§4165.03) (§1345.07) (§1345.09) Civil penalty of not more than $25,000 if practice found to be unfair, deceptive, etc. (§1345.07); injunction; actual damages and attorney's fees (§4165.03); other remedies as available at common law and other statutes (§1345.09) Yes (§§4549.42, 46, 49); 3 times the amount of actual damages or $1,500, whichever is greater and attorney's fees and costs

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
OKLAHOMA Yes (Tit. 15 §§751 to 765) Oklahoma Consumer Protection Act Yes (Tit. 15 §753) Attorney general; district attorney (Tit. 15 §756.1); consumer (Tit. 15 §761.1) Declaratory judgment, enjoin, restrain, actual damages, revoke license, grant other appropriate relief (Tit. 15 §756.1); violator liable to aggrieved consumer for actual damages and litigation costs, including attorney's fees, civil penalty: up to $10,000 per violation of injunction, if violation is unconscionable, penalty of up to $2,000 per violation (Tit. 15 §761.1) Yes (47 §12-503); misdemeanor fine not more than $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than 1 year or both fine and imprisonment (47 §12-506)
OREGON Main provisions adopted with significant variations (§§646.605 to 656) Yes (§646.608) State, consumers (§646.618) (§646.638) Civil actions may be brought to recover actual damages or $200, whichever is greater; punitive and equitable relief also; injunction; attorney's fees (§646.638); court may make additional orders of judgement as necessary to restore to any person or as may be necessary to insure cessation of unlawful trade practice (§646.636) Yes; Class C felony (§815.410); $1,500 or treble the actual damage, whichever is greater, plus costs and reasonable attorney's fees
PENNSYLVANIA No (Tit. 73 §§201-1 to 9) Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law Yes (Tit. 73§201-2 and 3) Private actions, attorney general, district attorney (73 §201-4), consumerpurchaser suffering ascertainable loss (Tit. 73 §201-9.2) Private actions for actual damages or $100 whichever is greater; court may award treble damages but not less than $100 (Tit. 73 §201-9.2); civil penalty up to $1,000, up to $3,000 if victim is 60 or older (Tit. 73 §201-8); suspend right to do business (Tit. 73 §201.9); injunction; costs and attorney's fees; any additional relief as deemed necessary or proper (Tit. 73 §201-9.2) Yes (Tit. 75 §7132); three times actual damages or $3,000, whichever is greater, and attorney's fees (Tit. 75 §7138); criminal penalties (Tit. 75 §7139)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
RHODE ISLAND No (§§6-13.1-1 to 12) Yes (§6.13.1-1) Attorney general (§6-13.1-5); consumer with ascertainable loss (§6-13.1-5.2) Class actions allowed (§6-13.1-5.2) The greater of actual damages or $200; punitives or equitable damages; injunction; attorney's fees, costs (§6-13.1-5.2) Yes (§§31-23.2-4; 31-23.2-3); prison up to 5 years or fine up to $10,000 or $1.00 per mile mileage fraud; revocation of license (31-23.2-7)
SOUTH CAROLINA No (§§39-5-10, et seq.) South Carolina Unfair Trade Practice Act Yes (§39-5-10) (§39-5-20) Attorney general (§39-5-50); any person suffering ascertainable loss (§39-5-140); solicitor, county attorney or city attorney with prior approval by the attorney general (§39-5-130) Treble damages, actual damages, costs, and attorney's fees (§39-5-140); civil penalty up to $5,000 (§39-5-110) No specific statute
SOUTH DAKOTA No (§§37-24-1, et seq.) Yes (§37-24-6) Attorney general; (§37-24-23) any individual (§37-24-31) False advertising Class 1 misdemeanor punishable criminally (§§22-41-10, 11); injunction (§37-24-28); civil penalty up to $2,000 (§37-24-27); actual damages (§37-24-31); court may make additional orders or judgments as necessary (§37-24-29); Class 2 misdemeanor (§37-24-6) Yes (§32-15-33); violator is guilty of Class 1 misdemeanor; for second and subsequent violations violator is guilty of Class 6 felony
TENNESSEE No (§47-18-101 et seq.) Tennessee Consumer Protection Act of 1977 Yes (§47-18-104) Attorney general; individual; Div. of consumer affairs in the Dept. of Commerce and Insurance (§47-18-106, 107, 108, 109, 114) Injunctive relief, damages for injured customers; revocation of violator's license; willful violators fined up to $1,000 (§§47-18-106, 108); possibly treble damages for willful violator (§47-18-109); Class B misdemeanor (§§47-18-104, 39-14-127) Yes (§47-18-104, (16)) Class A misdemeanor (§39-14-132)

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
TEXAS No (Bus. & Com. §§17.41 to 505) Deceptive Trade Practices–Consumer Protection Act Yes (Bus. & Com. §17.46) Attorney general; consumers; consumer protection division, district attorney (Bus. & Com. §§17.47, 17.48) Actual and treble damages (Bus. & Com. §17.50); injunctive relief, restitution, attorney's fees and costs, plus remedies available in other laws (Bus. & Com. §17.43, §17.50); restraining order, civil penalty not more than $2,000 per violation, not to exceed $10,000; if against consumer 65 or older, not more than $10,000 per violation, to to exceed $100,000 (Bus. & Com. §17.47) Yes (Bus. & Com. §17.46(16))
UTAH No (§13-11a-1, et seq.) Yes (§13-11a-3) State; consumer (§13-11a-4) Declaratory judgment, enjoin, greater of $2,000 or actual damages; actual damages; costs and attorney's fees; possible injunctive relief; remedies are in addition to remedies available for same conduct under state or local law (§13-11a-4) Yes third degree felony (§41-1a-1319); Class B misdemeanor to offer for sale, sell, use, or install a device that causes the odometer to register miles other than true miles (§41-1a-1310)
VERMONT No (Tit. 9 §2453) Yes (Tit. 9 §2453) Attorney general, state attorney (Tit. 9 §2458); damaged consumer (Tit. 9 §2461) Injunction; civil penalty up to $10,000 (Tit. 9 §2458); equitable relief, actual damages, attorneys fees, exemplary damages (Tit. 9 §2461) restitution of cash or goods (Tit. 9 §2458) Yes (Tit. 23 §1704a); fine not more than $1,000 for first offense and not more than $2,500 for each subsequent offense
VIRGINIA No (§§59.1-196, et seq.) Virginia Consumer Protection Act of 1977 Yes (§59.1-200) Attorney general; commonwealth attorney (§59.1-203); harmed individual (§59.1-204) Enjoin violations, actual damages or $500, whichever is greater (§59.1-204); penalty for willful violation is fine up to $1,000; attorney's fees and costs (§59.1-206) Yes (§46.2-112). Fines not more than $10,000 and sentenced to more than one year in jail, either or both for a first offense; subsequent offenses shall not be fined more than $50,000 and/or not less than 1 year nor more than 5 years in a state correctional facility.

Table 3: Deceptive Trade Practices—Continued

State Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act Adopted False Advertising Forbidden Who May Bring Suit Remedies Available Auto Odometer Tampering Forbidden
WASHINGTON No (§19.86.010 et seq.) Yes (§19.86.020) Any injured person, attorney general (§§19.86.090, 095) Civil penalties; injunctive degrees; treble damages, including costs and attorney's fees; (treble damages may not exceed $10,000); actual damages; injunctive relief (§19.86.090) Yes (§46.37.540); civil suit may recover costs and attorney's fees (§46.37.590)
WEST VIRGINIA No (§46A-6-101 et seq.) Yes (§46A-6-102) (§46A-6-104) Consumer with ascertainable loss (§46A-6-106) The greater of actual damages or $200; injunction (§46A-6-106); equitable relief No specific provision against tampering
WISCONSIN No; Wisconsin Consumer Act (§§421 to 427) Yes (§423.301) Class actions; individuals; administrator (§426.110) Customer entitled to retain goods received without obligation to pay and recover any sums paid to merchant (§425.305); fine up to $2,000 (§425.401); injunction, attorney's fees (§426.110) Yes (§347.415) up to $5,000 fine and/or up to 12 months in county jail (§347.50)
WYOMING Yes (§§40-12-101 to 114) Wyoming Consumer Protection Act Yes (§40-12-105) Attorney general (§40-12-106); class actions; consumers (§40-12-108) Restraining order; injunction (§40-12-106); actual damages for consumer; costs and fees (§40-12-108); if consumer is over 60 or a person with a disability and conduct was willful: reasonable attorney's fees and costs, restitution, civil penalty up to $15,0000 for each violation Yes (§31-16-119) purchaser may recover costs and reasonable attorney's fees (§31-16-123)
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over 4 years ago

I bought a 1995 Chevrolet Blazer and was assured this was a great vehicle and that it had been driven daily. I was also told that the motor that was in the vehicle had recently been taken out of a 2000 truck of some sort, at one point was even told that this motor had been rebuilt.March 8, 2010 I was driving down the road when a spark plug flew out of the motor and was pretty messed up, I replaced it, but had also noticed a knocking noise that i was unsure of. I was scared to even drive this vehicle that i had just purchased. I took it back to the so called mechanic where I purchased the vehicle to ask if he'd mind taking a look to see what he thought it could be. He was not around his shop but a few of his employees came out to check it out. As soon as I started my vehicle his mechanics automatically said,"Oh, that is not good...not good at all." They listen to the vehicle and played around with a few things and told me it was about to blow because it sounded like a bearing had gone bad. They then told me it was even a good idea to drive it home from there, to leave it with them, for the owner, who would probably fix the problem for half price, to take a look at and they would give me a ride to my home. I found my own ride and left my vehicle there. 3 hours later, not the owner, but the same guy I dropped the vehicle off with gives me a call back telling me that my engine is about to blow and it will be expensive to fix, also that unfortunately the owner would have to charge me full price for all the work and parts. At this point I have put 590 miles on this vehicle and it can not be driven. I decided to call around and just get prices on motors and was informed by several resources that a 2000 motor is not compatible with a 1995 Blazer. Although I bought this vehicle "as-is" I just feel there has to be some law prohibiting this. I am not sure exactly how, but there must be someway that he must fix this vehicle, or replace it, either with my cash, or another vehicle. He lied about the whole vehicle. And when we test drove the vehicle he drove it, and kept the radio up, now I realize the radio was a distraction to keep me from hearing the knocking sound. I can't see letting someone get away with this wrong doing.

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over 3 years ago

Me and my husbend just bought a 1999 Sunfire car as is. Well the first couple days it was fine. Today I went some where and the car started over heating for the first time. So I pulled over to the side of the rode and sat there and waited and then noticed that there was water everwhere on the rode from the car. I put more water in it and let it cole down and drove less then 3 minles and had to stop agen becoues it was over heating agen so I looked and all the water was gone. I put more in it and wached and seen the water was going strat throw. So I called and got someone to come get me and thay drove my car home and it did fine when I got home and the car lorned off I smeld oil but didnt see anything. So we looked it over and nothing. We called the car lot we got the car and thay said it sounds like we need a mechanic and then hung up the phone. Well now my car wont start at all. Thay told us the car was fine and there was nothing wrong with it. And now less then 2 weeks of gitting it I am having prombles with it. What can I do abouit this?

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over 3 years ago

On 5/20/09 I had a local contractor install an Amana package unit HVAC system at a cost of $4880.00.When I went to pay for it the contractor's wife(who managed his office) talked me in to purchasing an extended Goodcare warranty at a cost of $400.00. I had already written a check for the unit so I gave her the 400.00 dollars in cash. In return she gave me a receipt on their letter head for the combined amount totaling $5280.00.I did not realize at the time that she had written into her wording "Free Warranty" and no extended warranty was ever purchased. Also, they lied to me stating that I would get $1500.00 dollars back on my tax under the Obama Stimulus Package if I purchased this particular equipment. Guess who ended up with the $1500.00? Recently, after having many problems with this unit,I discover the contractor did not purchase the mandatory permit for this install. This action resulted in no final inspection having been conducted on this unit. At my request the county inspector came out to check and found so many deficiencies that he deemed this piece of equipment a "potential fire hazard" to my home. When I tried to get this matter resolved I discovered that they had change their entity from LLP to LLC to avoid justice on this and sereral other issues. Can they get away with this type of consumer fraud.

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almost 7 years ago

My wife and I bought a in-ground fiberglass pool to be installed by the MFG. authorized dealer. The pool was delivered with no standard of care, dropped and dragged into the back yard and installed with out the proper installation guide lines. Three months later the pool started cracking, and leaking from the light. the leaking had caused property damage. The MFG. and Installer walked. We had found out later the leaking light was not even the contracted light that was supposed to be installed. we have discovered recently we were given an undersized pool. We had filed suit but we were railroaded by our attorney where their was conflict of interests and unlawful activity. The attorney had taken us for over $50,000 and we got nothing. We were told by the mandatory arbitar of the case flat out that we got hosed and their was nothing we could do as a consumer and these people were all protected. We have gone thru the colorado supreme court regulation counsel ( and numerous other agencies that lead right back to this phoney counsel) and they swept the whole thing under the rug. We have contacted the State Bar, Denver District attorneys office, attorney generals office but have gotten no where. We have documents that our Attorney told us to " ripe up " during our law suit and was told not to look into our out come of our case. We have witness tampering and other documents that show out right fool play. The Attorney will not give back our original files and evidence of the case. Having been swindled and drained of our money and being at a loss of over a $ 100,000 due to these unconscionable acts we cannot now go back and fight for our supposed protective "Consumer rights ". I have witness, documents, photo's to back up this despicable cover up sitution.

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over 2 years ago

I purchased a 2003 e- class 320 mercedes. When I purchased the car the owner told me that he had just changed the battery and that is why the ABS ESP BAS lights were on in the dash board mechancism. Well, I took it to a shop that just deal with mercedes and the mechanic informed me that the rear tail lights assembly's were the wrong ones installed on he vehicle. The assembly's that were on the vehicle did not go with that model of mercedes. When I called the car lot owner back on the second day after the purchase of the car, he told me that there was nothing he could do, I bought the car "as is" and if I had to pay just a little more money to get it fix then I would just need to do that. I explained to the owner that you informed me at the time of purchased that you had just replaced the battery and that was why the lights in the dash were on, just take it a Autozone and they would put the machine on it and put in a code and the lights would go off. Please give feedback?

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over 2 years ago

I purchased a 2003 e- class 320 mercedes. When I purchased the car the owner told me that he had just changed the battery and that is why the ABS ESP BAS lights were on in the dash board mechancism. Well, I took it to a shop that just deal with mercedes and the mechanic informed me that the rear tail lights assembly's were the wrong ones installed on he vehicle. The assembly's that were on the vehicle did not go with that model of mercedes. When I called the car lot owner back on the second day after the purchase of the car, he told me that there was nothing he could do, I bought the car "as is" and if I had to pay just a little more money to get it fix then I would just need to do that. I explained to the owner that you informed me at the time of purchased that you had just replaced the battery and that was why the lights in the dash were on, just take it a Autozone and they would put the machine on it and put in a code and the lights would go off. Please give feedback?

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almost 3 years ago

I had a vehicle looked at by Terry Schnack of CARS - Christian Automotive Repair Service - in West Burlington, Iowa and he gave me a price of $2,600 (rounded figures)to replace the engine. I also had his assurance there were no other possible problems with the car, he even stated it had good tires and the transmission required the car to be running.
We immediately went to pick up the car when we were notified the car was ready. However, the cost had climbed to $3,630 although he was informed $2,600 was the max I could go. Since I found a cheaper engine, he says the difference goes to paying his business charge for accepting credit cards and possible future warranty problems; but the warranty has now expired.
He has refused the suggestion of the Attorney General's office on storage, has refused the demand letter from an attorney to release the car and has been charging me storage although I filed bankruptcy.
Any suggestions on dealing with a dishonest mechanic in southeast Iowa?

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about 4 years ago

Gold's Gym is a frequent violator of this act. They lead customers on and tell them one thing, but do another. I had signed up with them and they told me and my family that if I got 3 members to join the gym, that I would only have to pay $39 for the first 3 months of joining, and then I would get the rest of the year for free. I did so and got the 3 people to joing. By the 3rd month, they charged me for the 4th month and claimed that they said that I got the pay for 1 year/ get a year free membership. However, they NEVER told me this when I signed up. They made me sign an electronical contract, but never verbally explained the contract and it's tems with me. I have heard complaints from thousands of members who have stated that Gold's Gym had never gone over the contract with them. They lead people on into believing that they are a trustworthy gym, but many will agree that they take advantage of members and scam them for their money. If you google Gold's Gym complaints, you will see that MANY claims of fraud and scamming from Gold's Gym.

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over 4 years ago

Just wondering why has there not been an investigatation into the activites of the Lost Cherokee of Arkansas and Missouri Headed by a two time felon including Racketeering? Some of his information is found on GOOGLE 1. Research reveals trying to influence a political election process ...i.e. hosting fund raisers for Mike Beebe in his quest for the governors seat, at which time legislation was on Mr. Beebe's desk for formal recognition of the Lost Cherokee tribe. Mr. Beebe it appears had plenty of reason at that time to investigate this group. Even the bloggers was saying this was clear cut violations of non profit (501C3)laws, There was very little media coverage on this and I wonder about that also 2. Acting in official tribal capacities (COMPLETE WITH "Lost Cherokee Nation" logos on their cars) the officers of the Lost Cherokee was encourageing schools all over Nothern arkansas to involve themselves in a fraudulant scam type swindle of the U.S. Indian Education system out of more than two million dollars and trying to get a 5% kickback from the schools for their own use.We have learned that Federal investigators have interviewed school officials and others and apparently has shut this operation down. This group needs the attention of the people of the State through a grand jury and especially the Prosecuting attorney's. Research shows the State of Arkansas could be "back doored" with casino operations and we find that a Proffesor Mike Lawson Of Morgan, Angel and Associates of Washington D.C. has been activily Lobbying for State and perhaps congressional recognition. Just curious if all of the Prosecutors in Arkansas is asleep on the job???