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Exercise 10

Regulation of Trade Practices

While at work at her mail order Christmas shop, Betty received a fax from Intergalactic Travel describing the wonders of world travel and promoting special package tours. Although Betty traveled frequently, she never used a travel agent to make plans. Betty called Intergalactic and told it that although she loved to travel, she did not want it to fax her any more advertisements because she relied heavily on her fax machine for incoming business orders. Shortly before Christmas, Betty began receiving daily faxes from Intergalactic concerning wonderful Christmas getaways. Betty sues Intergalactic for damages.

How should the judge rule?

A. For Betty because Intergalactic violated the Unfair Practices Act.
ANSWER "A" IS CORRECT. The Unfair Practices Act requires anyone doing business in New Mexico to stop faxing unsolicited advertisements when requested to do so by any recipient if the sender did not have an existing business relationship with the recipient. Here, Betty never used travel agents, so it is clear that she did not have an existing business relationship with Intergalactic. Her passing comment to Intergalactic that she loved to travel did not create a business relationship that would entitle Intergalactic to continue to fax her. Because Intergalactic’s continued faxes interfered with incoming orders for Christmas merchandise, Betty should be able to recover actual damages (including loss of profits) or statutory damages for each violation, plus reasonable attorney’s fees and costs.
B. For Intergalactic because it had developed an existing business relationship with Betty when she told them that she loved to travel.
ANSWER "B" IS NOT CORRECT. Please try again.