Cloudy With a Chance of Price Gouging

By: Richard P. Lawson
– Law360

On July 28, 2018, California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in Lake, Mariposa, Mendocino and Napa counties due to the devastating effects of fires in the area. In response, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra issued an alert reminding all Californians that price gouging during a state of emergency is illegal under California law. The state's law prohibits businesses from raising the price of an item by more than 10 percent following a declaration of emergency. While exceptions exist, the California statute covers most goods, including food, emergency supplies, medical supplies, building materials and gasoline.