Consumer Fraud Victims
People regularly enter into oral or written contracts or agreements, because of their desire to obtain a particular product or service. Some people are more cautious than others and before they make their purchase, they will do some preliminary investigation of the company or product they intend to obtain or do business with. Other people, are more spontaneous in their purchases; and conduct little or no research before doing business with a particular company. All companies doing business are expected to deal with their customers with good faith and fair dealing. However, not all companies comply with the laws and proper business practices. Consumers must appreciate the spectrum of perceived fraud involved in business transactions. See our Fraud Spectrum Diagram below.
Every consumer has a responsibility to move cautiously when dealing with business transactions that are known to be fraught with consumer fraud.
Consumers may be harmed because he or she is involved in a breach of contract dispute. The dispute may have come about because of a simple mistake or because of company incompetence. In those cases, there may not be any indication of intentional wrongdoing. So, while there may be a breach of contract claim, the case does not rise to the level of a consumer fraud case. Other companies may employ a history of bending the rules. Companies may find creative ways to circumvent certain laws. Companies may adopt policies that take advantage of the law, when the law is not clear. These and other creative mechanisms of consumer fraud and deceptive practice, promotes the ongoing evolution of consumer fraud and of remedial laws for the attainment of justice.
Some companies will engage in business practices that are considered deceptive and misleading. These types of activities are intentional and purposeful to cause some form of loss. These companies may also employ the forms of business practices that are more like bending the rules, in an effort to diversify their efforts to increase the company’s revenue. These are the types of conduct by businesses that have caused the legislature to enact statutes to protect consumers from fraud. Some of these laws also allow defrauded consumers attorneys’ fees and the cost of the litigation. As a result of the attorneys’ fees that can be recovered from the defendant, more consumers are able to have an attorney to pursue their rights in court of law.
Get The Ottley Law Firm on your side!
At The Ottley Law Firm, in addition to the breach of contract claims, we will also bring General Business Law §§ 349 and 350 claims. And where the facts and circumstances of a particular case meet the heightened standards of a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) case, we will include that claim in the case and file the matter in the federal court. The federal court will be able to decide both the federal claim as well as the state claims. In any event, companies doing business in the state of New York and specifically in the City of New York are highly regulated for deceptive and misleading business practices. While New York State provides consumer protection statutes, New York City laws tend to provide consumers with even more protections.
Unfortunately, many consumers are unaware of their rights. As a result, certain companies doing business in New York may take advantage of these uninformed consumers. Certain other companies may seek to obtain additional revenue by utilizing deceptive and misleading business practices upon consumers. Nevertheless, some noncompliant companies may even utilize fraud in an effort to increase their profits. If you have been a victim of deceptive and misleading business practices, then you should get the name, address, phone number and the name of the representative that you dealt with. You should write down exactly what happened when you started doing business with that company. You should try to remember as much of the details and the things that were said to you as well as the things that you said to the company’s representative at the time. Having details about your interaction with the company and its representatives provides valuable credibility to the facts and circumstances that you are able to recall. Documents and other evidence will also help to give support to your account of what happened. When a client is not able to give a good and accurate account of what happened when they interacted with the company that defrauded them, it then appears that the client may have been careless instead of the company appearing deceptive and misleading. In addition, clients that procrastinate and delay the enforcement of New York’s consumer protection laws tend not to receive any benefit from bringing a case in court.
While there are many unhappy consumers that would like to bring a lawsuit against a particular company, The Ottley Law Firm is seeking to represent consumers that have been the victims of deceptive and misleading business practices. When we represent a client that has been defrauded by deception and misleading content, we take these cases on a contingency basis. This means that our client does not pay any money unless we get the defrauding company to offer a monetary amount to settle the case or we obtain a jury verdict. Moreover, we will utilize where applicable, New York and federal laws to persuade companies to enter into settlement agreements in an effort to avoid the expense of a prolonged and costly litigation. These laws may include New York General Business Law § § 349 and 350 as well as the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Both of these laws allow a winning plaintiff to obtain cost and attorneys’ fees.
The Ottley Law Firm is passionate, sophisticated and determined when prosecuting cases involving deceptive and misleading business practices. We will give the client the emotional support that they need to be able to focus and recall the unfortunate painful experience that they had to endure as a result of a company utilizing deceptive, misleading and fraudulent business practices. We take the time to explain to our clients the nature of the laws and the client’s rights that have been violated. We explain the options for enforcing and seeking justice for these violations. We will research and strategize to place our client in the best possible position to negotiate a settlement to the matter or in the alternative to prepare a certain case for trial and a favorable jury verdict.