New Jersey Supreme Court Clarifies Rules on Business to Business Consumer Fraud
New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act provides some of the strongest consumer protections in the United States. These protections have long been extended to consumers which are business entities. It is one of the strongest of New Jersey’s business law. However, the parameters of when a business, as opposed to a person, was acting as a “consumer,”have yielded conflicting decisions. The Supreme Court of New Jersey has recently issued an important decision affirming business to business consumer fraud, and establishing a test to clarify when a business should be considered to be a “consumer,” and when goods are considered “merchandise” invoking the protection under the Consumer Fraud Act.
The All The Way Towing Case: Background
On January 24, 2019, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued its opinion in the case of All the Way Towing, LLC v. Bucks County International, Inc. In that case All the Way Towing (ATW) , a limited liability company in the towing business, ordered an “International” brand all wheel drive truck from Bucks County International, Inc. (BCI), with an autoloader tow body manufactured by another company, Dynamic Towing Equipment and Manufacturing, Inc. (Dynamic). ATW spent several months negotiating the price and specifications with BCI’s salesperson, and then placed a $10,000 deposit.