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Northwestern Pritzker School of Law

Dispute Resolution and Arbitration

Class actions

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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Consumer Harm Acts? An Economic Analysis Of Private Actions Under State Consumer Protection Acts, Henry N. Butler, Jason S. Johnston Jan 2009

Consumer Harm Acts? An Economic Analysis Of Private Actions Under State Consumer Protection Acts, Henry N. Butler, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Working Papers

State Consumer Protection Acts (CPAs) were adopted in the 1960s and 1970s to protect consumers from unfair and deceptive practices that would not be redressed but for the existence of the acts. In this sense, CPAs were designed to fill existing gaps in market, legal and regulatory protections of consumers. CPAs were designed to solve two simple economic problems: 1) individual consumers often do not have the incentive or means to pursue individual claims against mass marketers who engage in unfair and deceptive practices; and, 2) because of the difficulty of establishing elements of either common law fraud or breach ...