Rhode Island Consumer Law

In Rhode Island, the mini-FTC act is R.I. Gen. Laws §§6-13.1-1 through 6-13.1-28.  Under this legislation, plaintiffs have a cause of action when a natural person, corporation, trust, partnership, incorporated or unincorporated association, or other legal entity engages in “unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce are declared unlawful” as defined in § 6-13.1-1 (6)(xiii)-(ix).  To sustain an action, the plaintiff must show actual harm due to the defendant’s conduct.  There is a statute of limitations for actions under the statute of 10 years.

A successful plaintiff is entitled to actual damages or two hundred dollars ($ 200), whichever is greater, and at the court’s discretion to punitive damages or any other equitable relief that it deems necessary or proper as potential remedies for a violation.  Damages under the statute are not capped, and attorneys’ fees are recoverable at the court’s discretion.  Class actions are permitted under the statute.