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How To Spot Deceptive Advertising

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To many, dishonesty in advertising seems to be a given, but consumers have the right to be protected from deceitful promotional practices. Deceptive advertising, also known as false advertising, is when a company uses confusing language or misleading and false statements to trick customers into purchasing a product or service.

Under consumer law, victims of deceptive advertising can consult Miami consumer protection attorneys to file a consumer protection claim. Avoid being misled by reviewing this brief list of common examples of deceptive advertising.

Hidden Fees

This type of deceptive advertisement fails to fully disclose the true cost of the item being promoted, so when customers actually go to purchase the product they encounter unexpected charges. Look out for pricing disclosures in an advertisement’s “fine print,” sometimes indicated by a small asterisk (*). Companies can charge these hidden fees and surcharges if they are fully disclosed in understandable language.


An advertisement that promotes a particular product’s price or availability only to lure in customers and try to convince them into buying another item. When customers, enticed by the deceptive advertising, arrive at the store, the promoted item is not in stock. The company will push a similar, but more expensive or lower quality in-stock product. The advertised item was likely never available or never being offered at such a low price. This practice is illegal according to consumer law and should be reported.

Misleading Claims and Vague Terms

Advertisements that use inaccurate visuals, confusing language or vague terms that lack legal definitions to convince consumers into believing that they are getting high quality or paying less by purchasing the promoted product, but are actually getting less than expected or paying more. Specific examples include:

      • “Best Case Scenario” Photography that exaggerate a product’s quality and hide its flaws.
      • Manipulation of Standards which changes the meaning of units of measurements from what is commonly understood to misrepresent a product.
      • False Environmental Claims that are not backed up by accurate and reliable scientific evidence.

Even though customers should take care to view advertisements through a critical lens, that does not mean they should tolerate advertising that actively tries to deceive them. If you fell victim to deceptive advertising, you have the right to seek compensation.

Call Graham Legal today to find out how our Miami consumer protection attorneys can defend your consumer rights and help you file a consumer protection claim.

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