When it comes to construction disputes, a Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act (known by its acronym “FDUTPA”) claim is not commonly asserted. A FDUTPA claim is a statutory claim under Florida Statute s. 501.201 en seq. This claim is NOT easy to prove, particularly in the construction context. Sometimes, a party will assert a FDUTPA claim to create a basis for attorney’s fees; however, that basis cuts BOTH ways, i.e., you can be liable for fees if you fail to prove the FDUTPA claim. In a construction dispute, a FDUTPA claim is one that really should be pled with caution after a party understands and fully considers what it MUST prove including the all-important consideration of how actual damages are determined under FDUTPA, which requires an actual loss. Nevertheless, it is good to know what you need to prove to support a FDUTPA claim in case you believe you have facts that can support a FDUTPA claim and actual damages under FDUTPA (known as benefit-of-the-bargain damages).
Reprinted courtesy of David Adelstein, Kirwin Norris, P.A.
Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at email@example.com