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Unfair practices: When sellers break the rules

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What are unfair practices?

Unfair practices include making false or misleading statements. For example, sellers must not:

  • tell you that the product or service is of better quality than it really is,
  • tell you that it is only available for a limited time if that is not true,
  • tell you that you need the product or service when you really don’t, or
  • tell you that you are getting a special price or benefit when they are really offering the same thing that you can get somewhere else.

Unfair practices also include other kinds of extreme and unfair sales tactics. For example, sellers must not:

  • take advantage of any language difficulty, lack of knowledge, or physical, mental, or emotional disability that you may have,
  • charge far more than what is reasonable,
  • pressure you to buy something that they know you cannot afford,
  • use extremely unfair contracts,
  • sell you something that is not really what they say it is, or
  • use fear or threats to pressure you.