What Evidence Can You Use To Prove An FDUTPA Violation?
The Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA) is a state law modeled after the federal Federal Trade Commission Act (FTC Act) that protects consumers and businesses against unjust commercial practices. The statute contains a private right of action—meaning you can hold a defendant liable for damages caused by an FDUTPA violation. Here, our West Palm Beach deceptive & unfair trade practices lawyers highlight the different types of evidence you can use to prove liability in a deceptive and unfair trade practices claim.
FDUTPA Claims: What Plaintiffs Need to Prove
As a starting point, it is important to clarify the elements that a plaintiff must prove in order to bring a successful FDUTPA claim. To recover financial compensation under the law, a plaintiff must establish the following three things:
- They were subjected to a deceptive or unfair practice by the defendant(s);
- They sustained actual financial losses; and
- The defendant’s deceptive/unfair conduct was the cause of the plaintiff’s damages.
Florida law states that the term “deceptive and unfair” is meant to be construed in a liberal manner—meaning that conduct that falls outside of the bounds of what would be expected by a reasonable and ordinary consumer may be deemed an FDUTPA violation.
An Overview of Evidence in an FDUTPA Claim
As with other types of commercial disputes, a successful FDUTPA claim must be built on a strong background of supporting evidence. Among other types of evidence, you may be able to prove an FDUTPA violation with:
- Testimony of the Plaintiff: Your personal account of what happened is relevant. It is important to get your side of the story down.
- Third Party Statements: Third party testimony is also useful evidence. Many FDUTPA claims are class action lawsuits—with allegations of similar deceptive conduct by the defendant.
- Advertising Information: An FDUTPA claim may be based on an allegation of false advertising. Save all relevant advertisements. You will need to establish the gap between the defendant’s promises/representations and the reality.
- Written Contracts/Promises: Some FDUTPA claims involve written agreements and/or oral promises. If you have a written agreement with the defendant, be sure to save a copy of it.
- Communications Between the Parties: Any communications between the parties that were materially misleading may be relevant, including voicemails, text messages, emails, and other written correspondence.
Ultimately, every FDUTPA claim is unique. Relevant evidence will vary depending on the circumstances of the case. To get help preparing a well-supported FDUTPA claim, reach out to an experienced Florida deceptive and unfair trade practices attorney for help.
Contact Our FDUTPA Attorneys for a Confidential Review of Your Case
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our West Palm Beach deceptive and unfair commercial practices lawyers are experienced, effective advocates for consumers and businesses. If you have any questions about putting together evidence to prove a FDUTPA violation, we can help. Call us now to arrange a confidential consultation with a top-rated business law attorney. Our law firm handles FDUTPA claims throughout the region, including in West Palm Beach, Miami, and Fort Lauderdale.