LAW-2125 Consumer Law

Ms. Barbara Anthony, Ms. Donna L. Palermino,

2 credits day; 2 credits evening.

Co-taught by Anthony and Palermino.

This course surveys modern case law and statutes that protect consumers from unfair and deceptive practices, with a particular emphasis on the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act, General Laws Chapter 93A, a typical general consumer protection statute. Topics will include common law tort and contract remedies; the Federal Trade Commission act; examples of specific consumer statutes such as automobile lemon laws; certain financial services laws such as the Truth in Lending Act; and theories imposing liability on financing entities and related companies. Because chapter 93A and similar state laws are used extensively in commercial litigation, its application in business suits will be considered.

Faculty comments: This is a two-hour course for students who have completed at least one year of law school. Prior completion of a course on Article Two of the UCC is helpful but not required. The method is lecture and class discussion based on appellate cases in the course materials (688 pages). The grade is based solely on a written exam calling for short essay-type answers. The course seeks to develop an understanding of state UDAP (“unfair or deceptive acts or practices”) statutes by focusing on Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 93A, Regulation of Business Practices for Consumers Protection. The course surveys: attorney’s fee awards, consumer class actions, contracts and misrepresentation, unconscionability, automobile “lemon” laws, residential leases, home improvement contractors, the structure of Chapter 93A; and the applicability of UDAP statutes to the learned professions, insurance claims, interstate transactions, small claims, and actions brought by one business against another. This course does not address products liability, anti-trust law or consumer credit regulation.

pointer    Enrollment is limited: 24 

pointer    Elective Course

pointer    Meets Financial Services Concentration Requirements

pointer    Recommended for the Mass Bar

pointer    Final Exam Required

<<Course Updated: March 15, 2016>>