Consumer Protection Laws - Part 4
Utah Truth in Advertising Act
To prevent "deceptive, misleading, and false advertising practices and forms in Utah. Found in UCA 13-11a-1 et seq.
What is an Advertisement?
"Advertisement" means any written, oral, or graphic statement or representation made by a supplier in connection with the solicitation of business. It includes, but is
not limited to, communication by noncable television systems, radio, printed brochures, newspapers, leaflets, flyers, circulars, billboards, banners, or signs. It does not
include any oral, in person, representation made by a sales representative to a prospective purchaser.
What is prohibited?
The act says that a "Deceptive trade practices occur when, in the course of his business, vocation, or occupation:
(a) A person passes off goods or services as those of another.
(b) A person causes likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding as to the source, sponsorship, approval, or certification of goods or services.
(c) A person causes likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding as to affiliation, connection, association with, or certification by another.
(d) A person uses deceptive representations or designations of geographic origin in connection with goods or services.
(e) A person represents that goods or services have sponsorship, approval, characteristics, ingredients, uses, benefits, or qualities that they do not have or that a
person has a sponsorship, approval, status, affiliation, or connection that he does not have.
(f) A person represents that goods are original or new if they are deteriorated, altered, reconditioned, reclaimed, used, or second-hand.
(g) A person represents that goods or services are of a particular standard, quality, or grade, or that goods are of a particular style or model, if they are of another.
(h) A person disparages the goods, services, or business of another by false or misleading representation of fact.
(i) A person advertises goods or services or the price of goods and services with intent not to sell them as advertised. If specific advertised prices will be in effect for
less than one week from the advertisement date, the advertisement must clearly and conspicuously disclose the specific time period during which the prices will be in
(j) A person advertises goods or services with intent not to supply a reasonable expectable public demand, unless:
(i) the advertisement clearly and conspicuously discloses a limitation of quantity; or
(ii) the person issues rainchecks for the advertised goods or services.
(k) A person makes false or misleading statements of fact concerning the reasons for, existence of, or amounts of price reductions.
(l) A person makes a comparison between his own sale or discount price and a competitor's nondiscounted price without clearly and conspicuously disclosing that
(m) A person, without clearly and conspicuously disclosing the date of the price assessment makes a price comparison with the goods of another based upon a price
assessment performed more than seven days prior to the date of the advertisement or uses in an advertisement the results of a price assessment performed more than
seven days prior to the date of the advertisement without disclosing, in a print ad, the date of the price assessment, or in a radio or television ad, the time frame of the
(n) A person advertises or uses in a price assessment or comparison a price that is not his own unless this fact is:
(i) clearly and conspicuously disclosed; and
(a) in the print media:
(i) to state in typeface that is sufficiently bold to be obviously seen;
(ii) to state in type size of at least 10 point type for a 14" x 23" document, and, in larger documents, of a type size of proportionately the same size; and
(iii) to place in the text so as to be obviously seen;
(b) in radio advertising, to verbally state in the same volume as that used in the advertisement;
(c) in television advertising, the method for print media or radio advertising is acceptable unless contrary to other governing laws.
(ii) the representation of the price is accurate. With respect to the price of a competitor, the price must be one at which the competitor offered the goods or services
for sale in the product area at the time of the price assessment, and must not be an isolated price.
(o) A person represents as independent an audit, accounting, price assessment, or comparison of prices of goods or services, when such audit, accounting, price
comparison is not independent. Such audit, accounting, price assessment, or comparison shall be independent if the price assessor randomly selects the goods to be
compared, and the time and place of such comparison, and no agreement or understanding exists between the supplier and the price assessor that could cause the
results of the assessment to be fraudulent or deceptive. The independence of such audit, accounting, or price comparison is not invalidated merely because the
advertiser pays a fee therefor, but is invalidated if the audit, accounting, or price comparison is done by a full or part time employee of the advertiser.
(p) A person represents, in an advertisement of a reduction from the supplier's own prices, that the reduction is from a regular price, when the former price is not a
regular price as defined in Subsection 13-11a-2 (12).
(q) A person advertises a price comparison or the result of a price assessment or comparison that uses, in any way, an identified competitor's price without clearly
and conspicuously disclosing the identity of the price assessor and any relationship between the price assessor and the supplier. Examples of disclosure complying
with this section are: "Price assessment performed by Store Z"; "Price assessment performed by a certified public accounting firm"; "Price assessment performed by
employee of Store Y."
(r) A person makes a price comparison between a category of the supplier's goods and the same category of the goods of another, without randomly selecting the
individual goods or services upon whose prices the comparison is based. For the purposes of this subsection, goods or services are randomly selected when the
supplier has no advance knowledge of what goods and services will be surveyed by the price assessor, and when the supplier certifies its lack of advance knowledge
by an affidavit to be retained in the supplier's records for one year.
(s) A person makes a comparison between similar but nonidentical goods or services unless the nonidentical goods or services are of essentially similar quality to the
advertised goods or services or the dissimilar aspects are clearly and conspicuously disclosed in the advertisements. It is prima facie evidence of compliance with this
(i) the goods compared are substantially the same size; and
(ii) the goods compared are of substantially the same quality, which may include similar models of competing brands of goods, or goods made of substantially the
same materials and made with substantially the same workmanship. It is prima facie evidence of a deceptive comparison under this section when the prices of brand
name goods and generic goods are compared.
(t) A person engages in any other conduct which similarly creates a likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding.
What do you do if the Act is violated?
!. Contact the Division of Consumer Protection
They can bring suit for you and others
Can request reimbursement
Can request any relief that is appropriate, such as injunctive relief
2. You can initiate your own legal action.
You can get your actual damages or $2,000 whichever is greater, attorneys fees, & costs.
You can get injunctive relief, but must first notify the advertiser of the error and give them time to advertise a correction.