Deceptive Trade Practices
Colorado has enacted the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act which allows an individual plaintiff to pursue a lawsuit for deceptive trade practices. The law, known as the Colorado Consumer Protection Act, list numerous examples of deceptive trade practices including making false or misleading statements about a competitor’s products or services; false statements in advertisements; advertises goods or services it doesn’t intend to sell; fails to disclose material information about a good or service; and several other deceptive trade practices in C.R.S.§6-1-105.
The defendant has to be engaged in a business, trade or occupation and the plaintiff has to have suffered an injury and damages because of the trade practice. The Colorado Consumer Protection Act also requires that “the deceptive or unfair trade practice significantly impacts the public as actual or potential consumers of the defendant’s goods, services, or property”. Because the Act protects the public, a deceptive trade practice that effects just an individual may not be actionable unless there is a danger the public would also be harmed by the practice.
Damages for violation of the Colorado Consumer Protection include the actual damages lost because of the deceptive trade practice or three-times the actual damages when established the defendant acted in bad faith. In addition, attorney’s fees and costs are awardable to the plaintiff if they win on the claim.