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H.B. 353

             1     

TRUTH IN ADVERTISING ACT AMENDMENTS

             2     
2009 GENERAL SESSION

             3     
STATE OF UTAH

             4     
Chief Sponsor: Michael T. Morley

             5     
Senate Sponsor: Margaret Dayton

             6     
             7      LONG TITLE
             8      General Description:
             9          This bill amends the Truth in Advertising Act.
             10      Highlighted Provisions:
             11          This bill:
             12          .    prohibits a person from advertising that a good or service will not be sold to a
             13      certain age group and then selling the good or service to that age group; and
             14          .    makes technical corrections.
             15      Monies Appropriated in this Bill:
             16          None
             17      Other Special Clauses:
             18          None
             19      Utah Code Sections Affected:
             20      AMENDS:
             21          13-11a-3, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2007, Chapters 138 and 306
             22     
             23      Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
             24          Section 1. Section 13-11a-3 is amended to read:
             25           13-11a-3. Deceptive trade practices enumerated -- Records to be kept -- Defenses.
             26          (1) Deceptive trade practices occur when, in the course of a person's business,
             27      vocation, or occupation that person:


             28          (a) passes off goods or services as those of another;
             29          (b) causes likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding as to the source,
             30      sponsorship, approval, or certification of goods or services;
             31          (c) causes likelihood of confusion or of misunderstanding as to affiliation, connection,
             32      association with, or certification by another;
             33          (d) uses deceptive representations or designations of geographic origin in connection
             34      with goods or services;
             35          (e) represents that goods or services have sponsorship, approval, characteristics,
             36      ingredients, uses, benefits, or qualities that they do not have or that a person has a sponsorship,
             37      approval, status, affiliation, or connection that the person does not have;
             38          (f) represents that goods are original or new if they are deteriorated, altered,
             39      reconditioned, reclaimed, used, or second-hand;
             40          (g) represents that goods or services are of a particular standard, quality, or grade, or
             41      that goods are of a particular style or model, if they are of another;
             42          (h) disparages the goods, services, or business of another by false or misleading
             43      representation of fact;
             44          (i) advertises goods or services or the price of goods and services with intent not to sell
             45      them as advertised;
             46          (j) advertises goods or services with intent not to supply a reasonable expectable public
             47      demand, unless:
             48          (i) the advertisement clearly and conspicuously discloses a limitation of quantity; or
             49          (ii) the person issues rainchecks for the advertised goods or services;
             50          (k) makes false or misleading statements of fact concerning the reasons for, existence
             51      of, or amounts of price reductions;
             52          (l) makes a comparison between the person's own sale or discount price and a
             53      competitor's nondiscounted price without clearly and conspicuously disclosing that fact;
             54          (m) without clearly and conspicuously disclosing the date of the price assessment
             55      makes a price comparison with the goods of another based upon a price assessment performed
             56      more than seven days prior to the date of the advertisement or uses in an advertisement the
             57      results of a price assessment performed more than seven days prior to the date of the
             58      advertisement without disclosing, in a print ad, the date of the price assessment, or in a radio or


             59      television ad, the time frame of the price assessment;
             60          (n) advertises or uses in a price assessment or comparison a price that is not that
             61      person's own unless this fact is:
             62          (i) clearly and conspicuously disclosed; and
             63          (ii) the representation of the price is accurate;
             64          (o) represents as independent an audit, accounting, price assessment, or comparison of
             65      prices of goods or services, when the audit, accounting, price assessment, or comparison is not
             66      independent;
             67          (p) represents, in an advertisement of a reduction from the supplier's own prices, that
             68      the reduction is from a regular price, when the former price is not a regular price as defined in
             69      Subsection 13-11a-2 (12);
             70          (q) advertises a price comparison or the result of a price assessment or comparison that
             71      uses, in any way, an identified competitor's price without clearly and conspicuously disclosing
             72      the identity of the price assessor and any relationship between the price assessor and the
             73      supplier;
             74          (r) makes a price comparison between a category of the supplier's goods and the same
             75      category of the goods of another, without randomly selecting the individual goods or services
             76      upon whose prices the comparison is based;
             77          (s) makes a comparison between similar but nonidentical goods or services unless the
             78      nonidentical goods or services are of essentially similar quality to the advertised goods or
             79      services or the dissimilar aspects are clearly and conspicuously disclosed in the advertisements;
             80      [or]
             81          (t) engages in any other conduct which similarly creates a likelihood of confusion or of
             82      misunderstanding[.]; or
             83          (u) (i) advertises that the person will not sell a good or service labeled with an age
             84      restriction or recommendation to a person under the age restriction or recommendation; and
             85          (ii) sells that good or service to a person under the age restriction or recommendation.
             86          (2) (a) For purposes of Subsection (1)(i), if a specific advertised price will be in effect
             87      for less than one week from the advertisement date, the advertisement must clearly and
             88      conspicuously disclose the specific time period during which the price will be in effect.
             89          (b) For purposes of Subsection (1)(n), with respect to the price of a competitor, the


             90      price must be one at which the competitor offered the goods or services for sale in the product
             91      area at the time of the price assessment, and must not be an isolated price.
             92          (c) For purposes of Subsection (1)(o), an audit, accounting, price assessment, or
             93      comparison shall be independent if the price assessor randomly selects the goods to be
             94      compared, and the time and place of the comparison, and no agreement or understanding exists
             95      between the supplier and the price assessor that could cause the results of the assessment to be
             96      fraudulent or deceptive. The independence of an audit, accounting, or price comparison is not
             97      invalidated merely because the advertiser pays a fee for the audit, accounting, or price
             98      comparison, but is invalidated if the audit, accounting, or price comparison is done by a full or
             99      part-time employee of the advertiser.
             100          (d) Examples of a disclosure that complies with Subsection (1)(q) are:
             101          (i) "Price assessment performed by Store Z";
             102          (ii) "Price assessment performed by a certified public accounting firm"; or
             103          (iii) "Price assessment performed by employee of Store Y".
             104          (e) For the purposes of Subsection (1)(r), goods or services are randomly selected when
             105      the supplier has no advance knowledge of what goods and services will be surveyed by the
             106      price assessor, and when the supplier certifies its lack of advance knowledge by an affidavit to
             107      be retained in the supplier's records for one year.
             108          (f) (i) It is prima facie evidence of compliance with Subsection (1)(s) if:
             109          (A) the goods compared are substantially the same size; and
             110          (B) the goods compared are of substantially the same quality, which may include
             111      similar models of competing brands of goods, or goods made of substantially the same
             112      materials and made with substantially the same workmanship.
             113          (ii) It is prima facie evidence of a deceptive comparison under this section when the
             114      prices of brand name goods and generic goods are compared.
             115          (3) Any supplier who makes a comparison with a competitor's price in advertising shall
             116      maintain for a period of one year records that disclose the factual basis for such price
             117      comparisons and from which the validity of such claim can be established.
             118          (4) It is a defense to any claim of false or deceptive price representations under this
             119      chapter that a person:
             120          (a) has no knowledge that the represented price is not genuine; and


             121          (b) has made reasonable efforts to determine whether the represented price is genuine.
             122          (5) Subsections (1)(m) and (q) do not apply to price comparisons made in catalogs in
             123      which a supplier compares the price of a single item of its goods or services with those of
             124      another.
             125          (6) To prevail in an action under this chapter, a complainant need not prove
             126      competition between the parties or actual confusion or misunderstanding.
             127          (7) This chapter does not affect unfair trade practices otherwise actionable at common
             128      law or under other statutes of this state.




Legislative Review Note
    as of 1-26-09 12:43 PM


Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel


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