When Can I Bring a Claim Under the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act?


The Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (FDUTPA) protects consumers in Florida from unfair methods of competition, unreasonable practices or deceptive acts during trade or commerce. Below is what you need to know about bringing a claim under the FDUTPA.

What is the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act?

The Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act prohibits unfair, deceptive, and unconscionable acts or practices. It offers a private right of action for individuals in order to protect consumers and businesses from misleading and false tactics. Although the statute provides for a right of action for consumers, Florida courts have recently allowed businesses to sue other businesses. 

Under the statute, a party can sue if they were tricked into paying for goods or services they never received or if they overpaid more than advertised for goods for services.  In order to have a claim under FDUTPA, you need (1) a deceptive or unfair practice; (2) causation; and (3) actual damages. Claims under FDUPTA are subject to a four-year statute of limitations and thus any lawsuit must be brought within four years of the alleged harm. 

What remedies are available under the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act?

If you are a plaintiff who was a victim of an unfair practice or deceptive act, you will be entitled to damages. This includes the difference between the amount you paid for the good or service and the market value of what you received. However, you are not entitled to any special or consequential damages for a violation of FDUPTA. For example, imagine a scenario where you hire a company to install a sprinkler system in your backyard. However, the company installs the wrong sprinkler system and as a result, all of your plants die. In this instance you would be entitled to the difference in value between the sprinkler system that you paid for and the one that was installed but you would not be able to recover the value of the plants that died. 

Are you entitled to attorney’s fees under the FDUPTA?

Yes, if you have a valid claim under FDUPTA, you may recover attorney’s fees and court costs. This is important because attorney’s fees can add up over the course of the case. Fla. Stat. §501.2105 allows you not only to recover actual damages but attorney’s fees and court costs, an appealing component of a claim brought under the FDUPTA. 

EPGD Business Law is located in beautiful Coral Gables, West Palm Beach and historic Washington D.C. Call us at (786) 837-6787, or contact us through the website to schedule a consultation.

*Disclaimer: this blog post is not intended to be legal advice. We highly recommend speaking to an attorney if you have any legal concerns. Contacting us through our website does not establish an attorney-client relationship.*

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Oscar Gomez

Oscar A. Gomez is a Partner and Chair of the Litigation Practice Group at EPGD Business Law. His practice focuses on Business Litigation, including but not limited to Business & Partnership Disputes.


*The following comments are not intended to be treated as legal advice. The answer to your question is limited to the basic facts presented. Additional details may heavily alter our assessment and change the answer provided. For a more thorough review of your question please contact our office for a consultation.

One Response

  1. I am looking to find a lawyer for arbitration against a Tampa Car Dealership that has been conducting fraudulent car repairs causing issues and more damage to vehicle incurring costs to owner of vehicle. not replacing parts they claim they have replaced. Holding my vehicle while it is being “repaired” which caused me to spend money on Ubers to work and back. So many more issues I would like to discuss. If you research BBB for Brothers Auto, Tampa, FL you will see there are many folks with very similar fraudulent deceptive repairs. Please help me make this company accountable and pay for thier lies so this doesnt happen to anyone else. Please reach out to me for a brief discussion to see if I can file something. Civil perhaps? 708-420-3381

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