Susan K. Storey


This Note discusses first, whether the judicially created public interest element of a private consumer protection case can be justified by the language of the Consumer Protection Act and, second, assuming some justification for the element can be found, whether the public interest test, as delineated in Anhold v. Daniels and Hangman Ridge Training Stables, Inc. v. Safeco Title Insurance Co. serves a purpose intended by the legislature.” This Note concludes that the public interest element is unnecessary because it hinders and often prevents consumer litigation of private damage actions under the Act. Moreover, the public interest element cannot be justified by any other policy reason. The legislature should take action to clarify, for the courts and the public, what elements of proof are to be required of a private consumer who brings a suit under the Washington Consumer Protection Act. Specifically, the legislature should eliminate the judicially created public interest requirement and legislate clear criteria for determining whether a particular consumer’s cause of action will fall within the Consumer Protection Act.