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Price Gouging Complaint

North Carolina’s price gouging law is triggered when the state suffers or is threatened by a natural disaster (such as a hurricane, tornado, winter storm, or flooding) an emergency (such as a pandemic), or an abnormal market disruption for critical goods and services (such as a gas pipeline issue). Price gouging—or charging too much in times of crisis—is against North Carolina law when a state of emergency is declared or proclaimed by the Governor, the Legislature, a county, or a municipality.

Under the law, the Attorney General’s Office can put a stop to price gouging and seek refunds for consumers who paid too much. The courts may also impose civil penalties against price gougers of up to $5,000 for each violation. The law applies to all levels of the supply chain from the manufacturer to the distributor to the retailer.

Consumers have let the Attorney General’s Office know about price gouging in the past, and we have enforced North Carolina’s price gouging law to win thousands of dollars in refunds and penalties from violators.

We Can Help

Presently, the price gouging prohibition only applies to the entirety of the following counties, including the jurisdictions of every municipality within said counties:

Alexander, Alleghany, Anson, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cabarrus, Caldwell, Caswell, Catawba, Cherokee, Clay, Cleveland, Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Gaston, Graham, Guilford, Haywood, Iredell, Jackson, Lincoln, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mecklenburg, Mitchell, Montgomery, Moore, Polk, Randolph, Richmond, Rockingham, Rowan, Rutherford, Scotland, Stanly, Stokes, Surry, Swain, Transylvania, Union, Watauga, Wilkes, Yadkin and Yancey, as well as tribal lands in the State of North Carolina held by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

There is no current state of emergency for other areas of North Carolina that would trigger North Carolina’s price gouging law. However, if you want to notify our office of a questionable business practice outside of the above Counties, please file a general consumer complaint with us.

For questions about price gouging, call our office toll-free within North Carolina at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM.