How Much Damages are Available in a Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Claim in Florida?
The Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA) is a strong consumer protection law. Through a successful FDUTPA claim, a business or consumer can seek financial relief for “actual damages” sustained as a result of a deceptive or unjust trade practice. This raises an important question: How are damages calculated in an FDUPTA case?
The answer depends on the specific circumstances of the case. Florida courts will consider the actual harm suffered by the victim. Speculative damages are generally not recoverable. Here, our Miami deceptive & unfair trade practices lawyers answer the question by highlighting the most important things to know about how damages are measured in a Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act claim.
How to Recover Compensation in Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Case
Step #1: Establish an FDUTPA Violation
Consumers, businesses, and organizations all have rights under Florida’s deceptive and unfair commercial practices laws. To successfully recover monetary damages through an FDUTPA claim, a plaintiff must satisfy the following legal requirements:
- Prove that the defendant engaged in a deceptive or unfair business practice;
- Prove that there is causation between the violative conduct and the plaintiff’s harm; and
- Prove that actual damages were suffered.
Step #2: Carefully Document Your Losses
One of the most important things to know about filing an FDUTPA lawsuit is that Florida courts will only grant financial relief when there is strong evidence that actual financial losses were sustained by the plaintiff. Unfortunately, our state’s case law makes it very difficult to recover compensation for special or consequential damages.
In addition, as noted by a Florida appeals court in an FDUTPA decision, the law does not offer financial recovery for “nominal damages, speculative losses, or compensation for subjective feelings of disappointment.” Without strong evidence to support actual harm, financial recovery will be difficult if not impossible.
The Value of an FDUTPA Claim Varies Based on the Circumstances
If you want to know the value of your FDUTPA case, you should speak to an experienced Florida business & consumer fraud attorney who can conduct a comprehensive evaluation of your claim. These are highly fact specific cases. The value of an FDUTPA lawsuit will depend on the actual financial harm that you suffered as a direct consequence of the defendant’s unfair commercial practices. The more damages you can tie directly to the FDUPTA violation, the greater the amount of financial compensation you will be able to recover in a lawsuit.
Get Help From a Consumer Fraud Lawyer in Southeastern Florida
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Florida consumer fraud attorneys have the knowledge, tenacity, and real world experience to handle the full spectrum of FDUTPA claims. When we represent fraud victims, our lawyers are focused on getting justice and the maximum financial recovery. If you have any questions about how damages are calculated in a deceptive or unfair trade practices case, we can help. Contact our Miami office or West Palm Beach office to arrange your initial case evaluation.