Attorneys General Are Vigilant About Pandemic-Related Price Gouging and Illegal Balance Billing

  • Pennsylvania AG Josh Shapiro sued online seller M & B Multi Services Inc. and its owner (collectively “M&B”) for allegedly gouging the price of hand sanitizer in violation of the 20% price increase cap set by Pennsylvania’s Price Gouging Act. The complaint alleges, among other things, that M&B sold 8-ounce Purell hand sanitizer for as much as $75.80 each. The complaint seeks injunctive relief, restitution, disgorgement, civil penalties, and attorneys’ costs.
  • Connecticut AG William Tong sent a letter to several healthcare provider associations and licensing boards to warn their members that charging additional fees for personal protective equipment used in providing services to patients may constitute illegal balance billing when the charges are billed in connection with the provision of in-network services. According to the AG’s office, the additional charges may violate the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act’s prohibition against unfair billing practices.