Attorney General Ashley Moody News Release

October 3, 2022
Contact: Kylie Mason
Phone: (850) 245-0150

CONSUMER ALERT: Attorney General Moody Warns Floridians of Price Gouging, Disaster Scams and Fraud in Aftermath of Hurricane Ian

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody is warning Floridians of price gouging, disaster scams and fraud in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. Thousands of Floridians have been displaced by Ian and may be seeking food, shelter, debris removal or home repairs. Attorney General Moody’s Price Gouging Hotline remains activated for consumers to report allegations of extreme price increases, as well scams related to the ongoing recovery efforts.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Hurricane Ian devastated Floridians, destroying homes and leaving thousands without food, water or electricity. Rebuilding will take months or longer—creating an inexhaustible demand for qualified contractors and debris removal services. Sadly, bad actors may exploit this demand to take advantage of people just trying to rebuild their lives. If anyone encounters one of these scams, or excessive price increases on essential commodities, they need to report it to our office immediately so my Rapid Response Team can stop the fraud and keep others from falling prey.”

Following a disaster like Hurricane Ian, qualified contractors are usually in high demand and become booked up for months. Scammers or unqualified out-of-state workers may flood in to take advantage of Floridians in need of expert service. If property is damaged from the storm, follow these tips when hiring a contractor:
Many contractors may ask consumers to complete an Assignment of Benefits that allows the homeowner who holds the insurance policy to sign over insurance rights or benefits to the contractor or other third parties. The contractor or third party can then file an insurance claim, make repair decisions and collect on benefits without the homeowner’s involvement.

While AOBs can offer convenience to policyholders attempting to navigate the insurance claims process, unscrupulous individuals and companies may seek to take advantage of the power an AOB provides. If a home is damaged, keep the following in mind when seeking repairs:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency offers disaster relief to eligible victims through various programs. When seeking aid, consider the following:
Water mains and personal wells can be affected during hurricanes. Dishonest companies and individuals may insist upon pricey tests to determine water safety. Avoid falling victim by following these tips:
Heavy winds from hurricanes or tropical storms often result in littered roads and uprooted trees. If planning to have nearby trees removed to protect a home, or have fallen trees removed after a storm, follow these tips to avoid being conned:
Following a disaster, it is common to see charity scams pop up—as scammers aim to take advantage of generous Floridians. Review these tips to avoid a charity scam:
Anyone who suspects price gouging can report it to the Florida Attorney General’s Office by using the No Scam app, visiting or calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM. Attorney General Moody’s No Scam app can be downloaded for free on Apple and Android devices through the app store by searching No Scam.

For tips on reporting price gouging, click here.

For more information on price gouging, click

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.

To download Attorney General Moody’s
Scams at a Glance: Price Gouging brochure in English, click here. To download the Spanish version, click here.

For tips on what to do before and after a storm strikes, download the 2022 Hurricane Preparedness Guide
here. For the Spanish version, click here.