Does Law Industries, LLC v. Department of Education Create a De Facto LUTPA Exemption for Governmental Entities?

by Zack Crawford


The Louisiana legislature equipped private citizens with an effective weapon to combat deceptive and misleading commercial activity when it passed the Louisiana Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Act (LUTPA).[1] But does LUTPA’s economic protection guard against the State’s own conduct? A recent Louisiana Supreme Court decision seemed to blunt LUTPA’s edge when the Court held that a LUTPA cause of action could not be stated against the State because it did not participate in “trade or commerce,” despite transacting in its private capacity.[2] In Law Industries, LLC v. Department of Education, the State of Louisiana entered into a contract for an elementary school refurbishment but terminated the project just a few months after work began.[3] Although the general contractor was able to pursue a breach of contract claim, a subcontractor on the project could only allege a LUTPA violation because it lacked privity of contract with the State.[4] However, the Supreme Court determined that even though the contractors participated in trade or commerce when they entered into the refurbishment agreement, the State did not engage in such trade or commerce because it was acting in “furtherance of its governmental function.”[5] Because the State almost always pursues its governmental function when it takes action, the Law Industries decision likely creates a de facto LUTPA immunity for governmental entities. As a result, future market participants could be left without a remedy when the State acts unfairly. Continue reading

Constitutional Clash: “Smart Laws that violate the Constitution”

by Paige Meno


Picture a bustling metropolis where a seemingly innocent storefront is a façade for a sprawling criminal network. Behind its polished exterior lies a web of deceit, funneling illicit funds through intricate corporate structures designed to evade the law. As law enforcement agencies scramble to solve this knot of financial crime, they face a formidable adversary—the veil of corporate anonymity. Enter the hypothetical scenario of “XYZ Consulting,” a fictitious entity entangled in the crosshairs of suspicion. Despite its appearance as a legitimate business, whispers of nefarious dealings lurk beneath the surface. Unbeknownst to authorities, XYZ Consulting serves as a critical cog in the money laundering machinery, facilitating the flow of dirty money through its labyrinthine corporate structure. Continue reading

Correct Quantum Query: Damage Awards and Abuse of Discretion in Louisiana after Pete v. Boland Marine & Manufacturing Co., LLC

by Tyler J. LeBlanc


“Damages are designed, not only as a satisfaction to the injured person, but likewise as a punishment to the guilty, to deter from any such proceeding for the future, and as a proof of the detestation of the jury to the action itself.”[1] This assertion is emblematic of the importance of, and the policies underlying, the remedy of legal damages by implicating both the economic and the corrective justice theories of damages.[2] The economic analysis of damages posits that damages are intended to deter misconduct by imposing a monetary penalty upon the defendant.[3] The corrective justice analysis states that it is not the defendant’s payment that is paramount, but the vindication of the plaintiff’s rights and making the plaintiff whole so far as money can.[4] Continue reading

“Economic Reality” – A Perpetual State of Confusion

by Lance H. Delrie


Congress passed the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) in 1938 to combat “labor conditions detrimental to the maintenance of the minimum standard of living necessary for health, efficiency, and general well-being of workers.”[1] The Act established minimum wage, overtime pay, record keeping, and child labor standards that affect full-time and part-time workers in the private sector and in federal, state, and local governments.[2] The FLSA also established an enforcement arm—the Wage and Hour Division of the United States Department of Labor (DOL).[3] Courts have long viewed the FLSA as congressional action to “protect the rights of those who toil [and] who sacrifice a full measure of their freedom and talents to the use and profit of others.”[4] On January 10, 2024, the DOL issued a final rule titled “Employee or Independent Contractor Classification Under the Fair Labor Standards Act” (Current Independent Contractor Rule) that governs the classification of workers as employees or independent contractors under the FLSA. [5] This rule became effective on March 11, 2024 and replaced its 2021 predecessor.[6] Continue reading

Morg-[th]an one testament? Louisiana law requires a true duplicate to probate

by Matthew P. Clark

Louisiana law imposes strict formalities on the creation of a last will and testament, which often results in litigation over whether the testator sufficiently complied with Louisiana law when making his or her testament. There are two types of testaments in Louisiana—olographic and notarial.[1] Generally, an olographic testament is one that is entirely written, dated, and signed in the testator’s handwriting.[2] For a notarial testament, the testator must be able to read and physically sign his or her name; the testament must be written, dated, and signed at the end of the testament and on each other separate page in the presence of a notary and two competent witnesses; the testator must declare that the instrument is his testament; and the testament must contain a proper attestation clause acknowledging that the form requirements have been met.[3] If the formalities for an olographic or notarial testament are not met, the testament is absolutely null, meaning it can have no effect.[4] Continue reading