Attorney General Ashley Moody News Release
August 29, 2019
Contact: Kylie Mason
Phone: (850) 245-0150
Attorney General Moody Extends Price Gouging Hotline StatewideTALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody today extended Florida’s Price Gouging Hotline for consumers in all 67 Florida counties. The Attorney General activated the hotline on Wednesday and today, is extending the hotline to all counties in Florida. This action comes after Governor Ron DeSantis expanded the state of emergency for the entire state.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “The state of emergency has been extended to include all 67 counties in Florida in preparation for the arrival of Hurricane Dorian. You should be taking steps now to ensure you are prepared for the storm and the possibility of days without electricity. I have extended Florida’s Price Gouging Hotline to all 67 counties in an effort to prevent gouging, so Floridians can afford essential items now. Please report gouging to my office by calling (866) 9NO-SCAM or download our new reporting app—NO SCAM.”
For more information about the NO SCAM app, click here.
To download the Attorney General’s Hurricane Preparedness Guide, click here.
For b-roll footage of the Florida Price Gouging Command Center, email Trevor.DeGroot@myfloridalegal.com.
State law prohibits excessive increases in the price of essential commodities, such as food, water, hotel rooms, ice, gasoline, lumber and equipment, needed as a direct result of an officially declared emergency. Anyone who suspects price gouging during this declared state of emergency should report it to the Attorney General’s Office by using the NO SCAM app, or calling (866) 9NO-SCAM. The Attorney General’s NO SCAM app can be downloaded for free through Apple and Android stores by searching NO SCAM.
For tips on reporting price gouging, click here.
Violators of the price gouging statute are subject to civil penalties of $1,000 per violation and up to a total of $25,000 for multiple violations committed in a single 24-hour period. In addition to the civil penalties for price gouging, state law criminalizes the sale of goods and services to the public without possession of a business tax receipt. Violators of the law can be charged with a second-degree misdemeanor.
Specifically, Florida Statute, Section 501.160, states in part that during a state of emergency, it is unlawful to sell, rent, offer to sell, or offer for rent essential commodities, dwelling units, or self-storage facilities for an amount that grossly exceeds the average price for that commodity during the 30 days before the declaration of the state of emergency.
For more information on price gouging, please click here.