CHAPTER 736*

UNFAIR SALES PRACTICES

*History of unfair sales practices act discussed. 148 C. 481. Unfair sales practices act cited. 229 C. 312.

Sec. 42-115e et seq. cited. 21 CA 661.

Constitutionality discussed. 8 CS 71. Servicing patrons with linen is not a sale of merchandise and does not come within this act. 16 CS 410.

Table of Contents

Secs. 42-111 to 42-115d. Unfair or deceptive trade practices, generally.

Sec. 42-115e. Injunction.

Sec. 42-115f. Exceptions.

Sec. 42-115g. Sales of commodities in package form. Definitions.

Sec. 42-115h. Inspection of packaged commodities. Off-sale orders.

Sec. 42-115i. Stop-use, stop-removal and removal orders.

Sec. 42-115j. Sale of commodities to be by liquid measure, weight, length, area or count. Exceptions.

Sec. 42-115k. Labeling of commodity package.

Sec. 42-115l. Label to show price per unit.

Sec. 42-115m. Wrapper or container not to mislead purchaser. Guarantee. Regulations.

Sec. 42-115n. Advertisement of price to show quantity.

Sec. 42-115o. Net weight to be used.

Sec. 42-115p. Price not to be misrepresented or misleading.

Sec. 42-115q. Injunctions against violations.

Sec. 42-115r. Alteration of tire by addition of white or colored stripe.

Sec. 42-115s. Advertising of artificial Christmas trees for sale.

Sec. 42-115t. Cash register read-outs to be visible to consumer. Violations. Enforcement.

Sec. 42-115u. Violations.


Secs. 42-111 to 42-115d. Unfair or deceptive trade practices, generally. Sections 42-111 to 42-115d, inclusive, are repealed.

(1949 Rev., S. 6715–6717, 8703; 1955, S. 2869d, 2870d; 2871d; 1958 Rev., S. 53-365; 1959, P.A. 284, S. 1–4; 465; 1961, P.A. 308; 1963, P.A. 433; 466, S. 1, 2; February, 1965, P.A. 274, S. 1, 2; 305; 350, S. 1, 2; 574, S. 34; 1967, P.A. 419; 1969, P.A. 591, S. 4; P.A. 73-615, S. 15, 16.)

Sec. 42-115e. Injunction. (a) A person likely to be damaged by a deceptive trade practice of another may be granted an injunction enjoining such practice under the principles of equity and on terms that the court considers reasonable. Proof of monetary damage, loss of profits, competition, actual confusion or misunderstanding or intent to deceive is not required. Relief granted for the copying of an article shall be limited to the prevention of confusion or misunderstanding as to source.

(b) The court in exceptional cases may award reasonable attorneys’ fees to the prevailing party. Costs or attorneys’ fees may be assessed against a defendant only if the court finds that he was wilfully engaged in a deceptive trade practice.

(c) The relief provided in this section is in addition to remedies otherwise available against the same conduct under the common law or other statutes of this state.

(February, 1965, P.A. 350, S. 3; P.A. 84-468, S. 5, 10.)

History: P.A. 84-468 deleted former Subsec. (c) which had required commissioner of consumer protection to take action under provisions of Secs. 42-112 and 42-113 against persons violating Secs. 42-115c to 42-115f.

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115f. Exceptions. Section 42-115f is repealed.

(February, 1965, P.A. 350, S. 4; P.A. 73-615, S. 15, 16.)

Sec. 42-115g. Sales of commodities in package form. Definitions. As used in sections 42-115g to 42-115q, inclusive, “commodity in package form” means a commodity put up or packaged in any manner in advance of sale in units suitable for either wholesale or retail sale, exclusive of an auxiliary shipping container enclosing packages which individually conform to the requirements of said sections. An individual item or lot of any commodity not in package form but on which there is marked a selling price based on an established price per unit of weight or measure shall be construed to be a commodity in package form; “weight” means net weight; “commissioner” means the Commissioner of Consumer Protection; “consumer package” or “package of consumer commodity” means a commodity in package form, that is customarily produced or distributed for sale through retail sale agencies or instrumentalities for consumption or use by individuals for the purposes of personal care or in the performance of services ordinarily rendered in or about the household or in connection with personal possessions, and which usually is consumed or expended in the course of such consumption or use; “nonconsumer package” or “package of nonconsumer commodity” means any commodity in package form other than consumer package, and particularly a package designed solely for industrial or institutional use or for wholesale distribution only; “intrastate commerce” means any and all commerce or trade, begun, carried on and wholly completed within the limits of the state and “introduced into intrastate commerce” shall be construed to define the time and place at which the first sale and delivery of a commodity is made within the state, the delivery being made either directly to the purchaser or to a common carrier for shipment to the purchaser.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 1; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1.)

History: June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004.

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115h. Inspection of packaged commodities. Off-sale orders. The commissioner shall, from time to time, weigh or measure and inspect packages or amounts of commodities kept, offered or exposed for sale, sold or in the process of delivery to determine whether the same contain the amounts represented and whether they are kept, offered or exposed for sale, or sold, in accordance with law. When such packages or amounts of commodities are found not to contain the amounts represented, or are found to be kept, offered or exposed for sale in violation of law, the commissioner may order them off sale and may so mark or tag them as to show them to be illegal. In carrying out the provisions of this section, the commissioner may employ recognized sampling procedures under which the compliance of a given lot of packages will be determined on the basis of the result obtained on a sample selected from and representative of such lot. No person shall (1) sell, or keep, offer or expose for sale, in intrastate commerce, any package or amount of commodity that has been ordered off sale or marked or tagged as provided in this section unless and until such package or amount of commodity has been brought into full compliance with all legal requirements, or (2) dispose of any package or amount of commodity that has been ordered off sale or marked or tagged as provided in this section and that has not been brought into compliance with legal requirements, in any manner except with the specific approval of the commissioner.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 2.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115i. Stop-use, stop-removal and removal orders. The commissioner may issue stop-use orders, stop-removal orders and removal orders with respect to packages or amounts of commodities kept, offered or exposed for sale, sold or in process of delivery, whenever in the course of his enforcement of the provisions of sections 42-115g to 42-115q, inclusive, he deems it necessary or expedient to issue such orders, and no person shall use, remove from the premises specified, or fail to remove from the premises specified, any package or amount of commodity contrary to the terms of a stop-use order, stop-removal order or removal order issued under the authority of this section.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 3.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115j. Sale of commodities to be by liquid measure, weight, length, area or count. Exceptions. Commodities in liquid form shall be sold only by liquid measure or by weight, and, except as otherwise provided in sections 42-115g to 42-115q, inclusive, commodities not in liquid form shall be sold only by weight, by measure of length or area or by count; provided liquid commodities may be sold by weight and commodities not in liquid form may be sold by count only if such methods give accurate information as to the quantity of commodity sold; and provided the provisions of this section shall not apply (1) to commodities when sold for immediate consumption on the premises where sold, (2) to vegetables when sold by the head or bunch, (3) to commodities in containers standardized by a law of this state or by federal law, (4) to commodities in package form when there exists a general consumer usage to express the quantity in some other manner, (5) to concrete aggregates, concrete mixtures and loose solid materials such as earth, soil, gravel, crushed stone and the like, when sold by cubic measure, or (6) to unprocessed vegetable and animal fertilizer when sold by cubic measure. The commissioner may issue such reasonable regulations as are necessary to assure that amounts of commodity sold are determined in accordance with good commercial practice and are so determined and represented as to be accurate and informative to all parties at interest.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 4.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115k. Labeling of commodity package. Except as otherwise provided in sections 42-115g to 42-115q, inclusive, any commodity in package form introduced or delivered for introduction into or received in intrastate commerce, kept for the purpose of sale, or offered or exposed for sale in intrastate commerce shall bear on the outside of the package such definite, plain and conspicuous declarations of (1) the identity of the commodity in the package unless the same can easily be identified through the wrapper or containers, (2) the net quantity of the contents in terms of weight, measure or count and (3), in the case of any package kept, offered or exposed for sale, or sold any place other than on the premises where packed, the name or a registered trademark of the manufacturer, packer, or distributor as may be prescribed by regulation by the commissioner; provided, in connection with the declaration required under subdivision (2) of this section, neither the qualifying term “when packed” or any words of similar import, nor such terms qualifying a unit of weight, measure or count as “jumbo”, “giant”, “full” and the like, that tend to exaggerate the amount of commodity in a package, shall be used; and provided under said subdivision (2) the commissioner shall, by regulation, establish (A) reasonable variations to be allowed, which may include variations below the declared weight or measure caused by ordinary and customary exposure, only after the commodity is introduced into intrastate commerce, to conditions that normally occur in good distribution practice and that unavoidably result in decreased weight or measure, (B) exemptions as to small packages, and (C) exemptions as to commodities put up in variable weights or sizes for sale intact and either customarily not sold as individual units or customarily weighed or measured at time of sale to the consumer.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 5.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115l. Label to show price per unit. In addition to the declarations required by section 42-115k, any commodity in package form, the package being one of a lot containing random weights, measures or counts of the same commodity and bearing the total selling price of the package, shall bear on the outside of the package a plain and conspicuous declaration of the price per single unit of weight, measure or count.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 6.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115m. Wrapper or container not to mislead purchaser. Guarantee. Regulations. (a) No commodity in package form shall be so wrapped, nor shall it be in a container so made, formed or filled, as to mislead the purchaser as to the quantity or the quality of the contents of the package, and the contents of a container shall not fall below such reasonable standard of fill as may have been prescribed for the commodity in question by the commissioner.

(b) All fresh or frozen meat or meat products sold at retail, except ground meat, liver, or any other meat or meat products which may be exempted by the commissioner, shall, when put up or packaged in advance of sale, be so wrapped as to permit the consumer to view and inspect the meat prior to purchase, with the top completely visible, except for labeling only on the top of the package which label shall not exceed a percentage of the top to be established by the Commissioner of Consumer Protection.

(c) A label bearing the words “100% guarantee” shall be affixed to the top of any packaged fresh or frozen meat or meat product which is packaged in accordance with the provisions of subsection (b) of this section and which is sold at retail, except that such label shall not be required on any meat or meat product sold at retail which, when put up or packaged in advance of sale, is wrapped with at least seventy per cent of the contents visible through the bottom of the package, which bottom visibility shall be uniformly distributed. A retailer shall, upon the request of a consumer with proof of purchase of any unsatisfactory meat or meat product to which a guarantee is affixed and the return of such unsatisfactory product, refund the full purchase price of such product or provide a satisfactory replacement for such product.

(d) The commissioner shall adopt regulations necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 7; P.A. 73-662, S. 1, 2; P.A. 85-123; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1.)

History: P.A. 73-662 added Subsec. (b) re packaging of fresh or frozen meat or meat products, effective October 1, 1974; P.A. 85-123 amended Subsec. (a) by prohibiting any person from misleading a purchaser as to the quality of the contents of a package, amended Subsec. (b) by deleting a requirement that 70% of the bottom of the contents of a package be visible and by removing a requirement that the commissioner of consumer protection adopt regulations and added Subsec. (c), requiring the guarantee of meat or meat products wrapped without 70% of the bottom of the contents visible and Subsec. (d) requiring the commissioner of consumer protection to adopt necessary regulations; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004.

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115n. Advertisement of price to show quantity. Whenever a commodity in package form is advertised in any manner and the retail price of the package is stated in the advertisement, there shall be closely and conspicuously associated with such statement of price a declaration of the basic quantity of contents of the package as is required by law or regulation to appear on the package; provided in connection with the declaration required under this section there shall be declared neither the qualifying term “when packed” nor any other words of similar import, nor such terms qualifying a unit of weight, measure or count as “jumbo”, “giant”, “full” and the like, that tend to exaggerate the amount of commodity in the package.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 8.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115o. Net weight to be used. Whenever any commodity is sold on the basis of weight, the net weight of the commodity shall be employed, and all contracts concerning commodities shall be so construed.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 9.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115p. Price not to be misrepresented or misleading. Whenever any commodity or service is sold, or is offered, exposed or advertised for sale, by weight, measure or count, the price shall not be misrepresented, nor shall the price be represented in any manner calculated or tending to mislead or deceive an actual or prospective purchaser. Whenever an advertised, posted or labeled price per unit of weight, measure or count includes a fraction of a cent, all elements of the fraction shall be prominently displayed and the numeral or numerals expressing the fraction shall be immediately adjacent to, of the same general design and style as, and at least one-half the height and width of, the numerals representing the whole cents.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 10.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115q. Injunctions against violations. The commissioner may apply to any court of competent jurisdiction for, and such court upon hearing and for cause shown may grant, a temporary or permanent injunction restraining any person from violating any provision of sections 42-115g to 42-115p, inclusive.

(1967, P.A. 804, S. 11.)

Cited. 158 C. 543.

Sec. 42-115r. Alteration of tire by addition of white or colored stripe. No person, firm, corporation or partnership shall sell, offer for sale, advertise, or represent as a new tire, a tire which has been altered or reprocessed by the addition of a white or colored stripe to the outer sidewall of such tire, unless such tire bears a permanent label, which shall be not less than three-eighths inch in height and conspicuously displayed on the side of the tire altered or reprocessed, with the words “WHITEWALL ADDED” if the added stripe is white or “COLORWALL ADDED” if the stripe is colored. The labeling requirement of this section shall not be construed as authority or permission to impair or affect the structural integrity or safety of such tire. Failure to comply with the provisions of this section shall be deemed a deceptive trade practice as defined in section 42-110b.

(1969, P.A. 172, S. 1, 2; P.A. 84-468, S. 6, 10.)

History: P.A. 84-468 changed reference from Sec. 42-115d to Sec. 42-110b which defines deceptive trade practices.

See Sec. 14-106d re sale or offer for sale of air bag replacement device that does not meet federal safety requirements.

Cited. 158 C. 543. Cited. 231 C. 707.

Sec. 42-115s. Advertising of artificial Christmas trees for sale. Whenever artificial Christmas trees are advertised for sale in a newspaper, magazine or other publication or in the form of a book, notice, circular, pamphlet, letter, handbill, poster, bill, sign, placard, card, label or tag, still or motion picture, loudspeaker, radio or television presentation, such trees shall be clearly identified as artificial. Any person, firm, corporation or association, or any agent or employee thereof, who violates any provision of this section shall be deemed to have engaged in deceptive or misleading advertising and shall be subject to action by the Commissioner of Consumer Protection in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

(P.A. 73-306; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1.)

History: June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004.

Sec. 42-115t. Cash register read-outs to be visible to consumer. Violations. Enforcement. (a) No person, partnership, association or corporation shall use in the ordinary course of business any cash register or machine or device of similar function which does not produce a read-out conspicuous to the consumer on the front or back of such register. The requirements of this section shall not apply to any retail food store, supermarket or any business establishment which provides such cash register, machine or device in each department or provides the consumer at the time of the sales transaction with a sales slip, receipt or similar document which describes the item purchased. The requirements of this section shall only apply to such cash register, machine or device which is installed, purchased, leased, or otherwise contracted for within the state of Connecticut subsequent to April 1, 1978. For the purposes of this section, the item description requirement shall be satisfied by a statement designating: (1) The department in which the item is purchased, (2) a classification of items which includes the item purchased or (3) an inventory control or similar number which corresponds to an identical number appearing on the price or other tag or label affixed to the item.

(b) Any violation of subsection (a) of this section shall be deemed an unfair or deceptive trade practice under subsection (a) of section 42-110b.

(c) The Commissioner of Consumer Protection shall have all of the powers and remedies conferred upon him under chapter 735a for the administration and enforcement of this section.

(P.A. 77-364, S. 1–3; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1.)

History: June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004.

Cited. 231 C. 707.

Sec. 42-115u. Violations. (a) Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a class C misdemeanor.

(b) A violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed an unfair or deceptive practice under section 42-110b.

(c) The Commissioner of Consumer Protection, after a hearing conducted in accordance with the provisions of chapter 54, may impose a civil penalty of not more than one hundred dollars for the first offense and of not more than five hundred dollars for any subsequent offense on any person who violates any provision of sections 42-115g to 42-115p, inclusive, or any regulation adopted pursuant to said sections. Each violation with respect to each such unit, package or device shall be considered a separate offense.

(P.A. 84-468, S. 7, 10; P.A. 90-125, S. 7; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, S. 146(c); P.A. 04-189, S. 1; P.A. 12-80, S. 183.)

History: P.A. 90-125 added Subsec. (c) re administrative penalties; June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6 replaced Commissioner of Consumer Protection with Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective July 1, 2004; P.A. 04-189 repealed Sec. 146 of June 30 Sp. Sess. P.A. 03-6, thereby reversing the merger of the Departments of Agriculture and Consumer Protection, effective June 1, 2004; P.A. 12-80 amended Subsec. (a) to change penalty from a fine of not more than $500 or imprisonment of not more than 90 days or both to a class C misdemeanor.

Cited. 231 C. 707.