During emergencies such as the COVID-19 outbreak, it is not unusual for unscrupulous businesses, profiteers and scam artists to prey on consumers. Governor Evers has declared a State of Emergency due to the COVID-19 outbreak in Wisconsin and that means Wisconsin's Anti Price Gouging Law is in effect.
The law prohibits sellers from selling consumer goods or services at prices greater than 15% above the highest price at which the seller sold like goods or services in the area during the 60 days immediately preceding the emergency declaration.
- The law applies to both wholesale and retail sales. As the current emergency declaration affects the whole State of Wisconsin, price gouging is illegal statewide.
- The only exceptions to the law are cases in which the price does not exceed the seller's cost plus normal markup or the selling price is required by law.
- Wisconsin's Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) enforces the Anti Price Gouging Law. If you believe a business is price gouging during the COVID-19 emergency, call DATCP at (800) 422-7128 to file a complaint.
Terrence M. Polich is a partner at Lawton & Cates, S.C., specializing in lemon law and warranty cases, professional negligence, personal injury, business litigation and consumer law. Attorney Polich has been litigating Lemon Law cases for nearly 20 years.