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Can You Define An Unfair Trade Practice in Louisiana?

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James H. Gibson - Professional Liability - Super Lawyers

Answered by: James H. Gibson

Located in Lafayette, LAGibson Law Partners, LLC

Phone: 337-761-6250
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It used to be that only businesses could file an unfair trade suit against another business. But a few years ago the Supreme Court of the U.S. ruled that anyone who can show damages has the right to sue for recovery, even an individual.

Most importantly, damages awarded by the courts may be trebled (tripled) under certain circumstances and attorney’s fees are recoverable.

Some examples of unfair trade practices

Some common practices that have been ruled to be “unfair” by the courts include:

  • Fraudulent acts, including but not limited to mail and wire fraud
  • Failure to disclose one or more data breaches
  • Theft of tangible or intellectual property
  • Deceptive advertising which misrepresents a product’s advantages or benefits over its competitors’ similar products
  • Producing or distributing a product known to be dangerous to consumers
  • Deceptively “piggy-backing” on another company’s products or good reputation with the intent of falsely indicating a commercial relationship
  • Providing warrantees or guarantees with no intention or process available for fulfillment by the consumer
  • Violating territorial agreements established by the franchisor
  • Industrial spying or purchasing trade secrets from a competitor’s employees

Unfair trade practices by business partners

But competitors are not the only ones who may find themselves in unfair trade practice litigation. Increasingly, business partners are finding themselves in disputes over investments and stocks, operating agreements and private contracts that may harm the value of the commercial partnership.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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