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Ellis Winters

Ellis & Winters

Pick a random case from, for example, the North Carolina Business Court’s online docket. The complaint and any counterclaims probably allege a violation of North Carolina’s “unfair and deceptive trade practices” statute, N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1.

Why is section 75-1.1 so important? First, the statute’s broad wording—“unfair and deceptive”—creates uncertainty for courts, lawyers, and, most importantly, clients. Second, winning a section 75-1.1 claim generates a big reward: treble damages, plus the chance to win attorney fees.

It is no wonder, then, that almost every business dispute or consumer dispute in North Carolina includes a section 75-1.1 claim. Over 2000 reported decisions interpret section 75-1.1. To counsel clients, lawyers need to understand those decisions and assess how the courts might apply section 75-1.1 in future cases.

This blog gives the law under section 75-1.1 the focused discussion that it deserves. The blog has three key goals:

  1. To update readers on developments in the law under section 75-1.1,
  2. To spot unresolved issues under the statute and analyze how those issues might be resolved, and
  3. To promote dialogue about section 75-1.1, its role, and its future.

We plan to make posts on a regular cycle—8 a.m. Eastern time on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month. From time to time, we might make additional posts (over and above our usual schedule) to report on time-sensitive developments.

You might be curious about the banner photo on our homepage. It was taken by a talented photographer and graphic artist, April Rummage ( The photo shows the bench of the North Carolina Supreme Court.

Thank you for reading this blog. We encourage you to share your thoughts in the comments.

April 8, 2014
Posted in  Other 75-1.1 Issues Overview and Orientation