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Ohio Foreclosure Defense & Consumer Law > Blog > Consumer Sales Practices Act > What Constitutes An “Unconscionable” Business Practice Under The CSPA?

What Constitutes An “Unconscionable” Business Practice Under The CSPA?


The CSPA (The Ohio Consumer Sales Protection Act) is a piece of legislation that defines whether or not certain business practices are legal, what sorts of claims businesses can make in their advertisements, and outlines the legal remedies available to consumers when the provisions of this law are violated by Ohio businesses. It is a vital piece of business regulation that ensures that businesses deal fairly with the public and offers consumers remedies for when businesses fail to operate fairly. The Act protects consumers from business practices that are unfair, deceptive, or “unconscionable.” In this article, the Columbus, OH consumer claims attorneys at Kohl & Cook Law Firm, LLC will discuss one term used in the act: unconscionable. In other words, what does it mean for a business practice to be “unconscionable?”

What is an “unconscionable” business practice under the CSPA? 

According to the CSPA, “No supplier shall commit an unconscionable act or practice in connection with a consumer transaction. Such an unconscionable act or practice by a supplier violates this section whether it occurs before, during, or after the transaction.” (1345.03). In plain English, it is unlawful for a business to engage in “unconscionable” acts under Ohio law. However, the term “unconscionable” is somewhat vague and subjective. Luckily, the CSPA sets forth 7 circumstances for judges to consider when determining whether or not a business has violated the law. These include:

  1. Ohio businesses may not take advantage of a customer due to physical or mental disability. This includes taking advantage of a customer due to illiteracy, ignorance, or the ability to understand the language of the agreement.
  2. A business may not charge a price that is substantially in excess of other businesses offering the same product or service.
  3. A business may not engage in any transaction with a consumer who does not receive a benefit from the transaction.
  4. A lender may not enter into a consumer transaction when there is no reasonable probability that the consumer can pay the amount owed.
  5. A judge can determine that a transaction was “substantially one-sided” in favor of the business, and deem the transaction “unconscionable” on that basis.
  6. Businesses cannot make misleading statements concerning their products or services. If a consumer is likely to rely on a misleading statement to make a transaction, a judge can deem that “unconscionable.”
  7. Businesses are required to make cash refunds to customers unless they have a sign conspicuously posted where customers can see it.

The provisions provide judges with a basic test to determine whether or not a business’s practices are “unconscionable” under the law. Violations of these provisions can result in the business being sanctioned, sued, and fined. Consumers can file lawsuits making these allegations against an Ohio business.

Talk to a Columbus, OH Consumer Claims Attorney Today 

The Columbus consumer claims attorneys at Kohl & Cook Law Firm, LLC represent the interests of Ohio consumers filing fraud and bad business practices lawsuits against Ohio businesses. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation, and we can begin discussing your case right away.



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