DTPA – Deceptive Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act
It can be really frustrating when a business takes advantage of you, and it’s not unusual to feel helpless when you’re in a dispute with a business. But just remember that you are not helpless. The State of Texas has some of the best consumer protection laws in the United States. The Texas Deceptive Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act (DTPA) is a particularly powerful tool against unscrupulous businesses. If you have been treated unfairly by a business, you should consult with an experienced consumer protection attorney because you may have a claim under the DTPA.
The DTPA prohibits a wide variety of shady practices by businesses, including:
- Making false or misleading statements regarding the nature of a discount;
- Claiming that goods are new if they are actually used;
- Breach of warranty;
- Engaging in unconscionable bargaining tactics;
- Misrepresentation in the sale or lease of vehicles;
- Misrepresentation in the repair of vehicles;
- Misrepresentation or fraud in foundation repair;
- Misrepresentation in home repairs;
- False or misleading advertisement;
- Lying about the need for repairs or parts;
- Price gouging in the wake of a disaster such as a hurricane
These are only a few of the deceptive trade practices that are outlawed by the DTPA. If you have been the victim of one of these unfair tactics or of another business practice that is deceptive in nature, you may be entitled to monetary damages under the DTPA. A consumer who successfully proves that a business engaged in a forbidden trade practice can recover up to three times the amount of their economic damages as well as attorneys’ fees. The statute of limitations for filing a DTPA claim is two years, so you should consult with a consumer law attorney as soon as you can if you have been the victim of a company’s deceptive trade practices.