4712.10 Action for recovery of damages.

(A)

(1) A buyer injured by a violation of sections 4712.01 to 4712.14 of the Revised Code may bring an action for recovery of damages.

(2) Damages awarded under division (A)(1) of this section shall not be less than the amount paid by the buyer to the credit services organization, plus reasonable attorney's fees and court costs.

(3) The buyer may be awarded punitive damages.

(4) No action shall be brought under division (A)(1) of this section after four years after the date of the execution of the contract for services to which the action relates.

(B)

(1) The division of financial institutions, the attorney general, or a buyer may bring an action to enjoin a violation of sections 4712.01 to 4712.14 of the Revised Code.

(2) The division may initiate criminal proceedings under sections 4712.01 to 4712.14 of the Revised Code by presenting any evidence of criminal violations to the prosecuting attorney of the county in which the offense may be prosecuted. If the prosecuting attorney does not prosecute the violations, or at the request of the prosecuting attorney, the division shall present any evidence of criminal violations to the attorney general, who may proceed in the prosecution with all the rights, privileges, and powers conferred by law on prosecuting attorneys, including the power to appear before grand juries and to interrogate witnesses before such grand juries. These powers of the attorney general shall be in addition to any other applicable powers of the attorney general.

(C) The remedies provided by this section are in addition to any other remedy provided by law.

(D) In any proceeding or action brought under sections 4712.01 to 4712.14 of the Revised Code, the burden of proving an exemption under those sections is on the person claiming the benefit of the exemption.

(E) No person shall be deemed to violate sections 4712.01 to 4712.14 of the Revised Code with respect to any act taken or omission made in reliance on a written notice, written interpretation, or written report from the superintendent of financial institutions, unless there is a subsequent amendment to those sections, or the rules promulgated thereunder, that affects the superintendent's notice, interpretation, or report.

Effective Date: 09-26-1996