Glossary of CFA Terms

Vocabulary words have meaning both in life and in the law. Below I have listed the most frequent terms used in this website and in the CFA what each word means. The terms are listed in alphabetical order. I am certain this glossary will be of assistance to you in your reading.

Advertisement – The CFA defines the term “advertisement” as:

the attempt, directly or indirectly, by publication, dissemination, solicitation, endorsement or circulation or in any other way to induce directly or indirectly any person to enter or not enter into any obligation or acquire any title or interest in any merchandise or to increase the consumption thereof or to make any loan.

Attorney General – The CFA defines “Attorney General” to include:

  • the Attorney General of the State of New Jersey; or
  • any person acting on his/her behalf.

Affirmative Misrepresentation

An affirmative misrepresentation is defined as:

  1. an untrue statement;
  2. “made to deceive or mislead”;
  3. “made about a fact which is important or significant to the sale/advertisement”;
  4. “communicated to another person”;
  5. “to create the possibility that other person will be misled.”

The offending statement must be “made about a fact which is important or significant to the sale/advertisement. A statement is material to the transaction if:

  • the statement is made at the time an agreement is made and not thereafter; and
  • “a reasonable person would attach importance to its existence in determining a choice of action”; or
  • “the maker of the representation knows or has reason to know that its recipient regards or is likely to regard the matter as important in determining his choice of action, even though a reasonable person would not so regard it.”

Merchandise – The CFA defines the term “merchandise” generally as any of the following:

  • Goods;
  • Commodities;
  • Services;
  • Anything offered, directly or indirectly, to the public for sale;

Who is a Person Under the CFA?

  • Natural person or their legal representative;
  • Partnership;
  • Corporation;
  • Company;
  • Trust;
  • Business entity;
  • Association; or
  • “Agent, employee, salesman, partner, officer, director, member, stockholder, associate,
  • trustee of any of the above.

Sale – The CFA defines the term “sale” as any of the following:

  • “Sale;
  • Rental; or
  • Distribution;
  • Offer for sale, rental or distribution; or
  • Attempt directly or indirectly to sell, rent or distribute.”

“Unconscionable commercial practice”:

  1. “an activity in the public marketplace”;
  2. “which is basically unfair or unjust”;
  3. “which materially departs from standards of good faith, honesty in fact and fair dealing.

Unconscionable conduct speaks of factual dishonesty and unfair dealing.


  1. conduct or an advertisement;
  2. that is “misleading to an average consumer to the extent that it is capable of, and likely to, mislead an average consumer.”

It is the capacity to mislead that is important. Therefore, it is irrelevant whether:

  1. at a later time, the conduct or advertisement was capable of explanation “to a more knowledgeable and inquisitive consumer”; or
  2. the conduct or advertisement actually misled claimants; or
  3. the merchant acted in good faith.


  1. “a perversion of the truth”; or
  2. a misstatement; or
  3. a falsehood;
  4. “communicated to another person”; and
  5. “creating the possibility that that other person will be cheated:

“False pretense”:

  1. “an untruth”;
  2. “knowingly expressed by a wrongdoer.”

“False promise”:

  1. “an untrue commitment or pledge”;
  2. “communicated to another person”;
  3. “to create the possibility that that other person will be misled:


  1. an untrue statement;
  2. “made to deceive or mislead”;
  3. “made about a fact which is important or significant to the sale/advertisement”;
  4. “communicated to another person”;
  5. “to create the possibility that other person will be misled.”


  1. “transfer of ownership;
  2. rental;
  3. distribution;
  4. offer to sell, rent, or distribute; and”
  5. direct or indirect attempts to sell, rent or distribute.


  1. “a notice designed to attract public attention”;
  2. communicated in one of the following manners, whether attempted directly or indirectly:
    1. publication;
      1. dissemination;
    2. solicitation;
      1. endorsement;
  • circulation; or
    1. “in any way to induce any person to enter or not enter into an obligation, acquire any title or interest in any merchandise, increase the consumption of any merchandise or make any loan.”


  1. objects;
  2. wares;
  3. goods;
  4. commodities;
  5. services; or
  6. “anything offered directly or indirectly to the public for sale:

“Real estate”: “land and if there is a building on it, that building as well.”

“Omission:” “the act of neglecting to do what the law requires” and liability is imposed for such inaction, “depending on the existence of a duty to act under the circumstances.”

A person acts “knowingly” if:

  1. “he/she is aware that his/her conduct is of a nature that it is practically certain that his/ her conduct will cause a particular result.”
  2. “he/she acts with knowledge, consciously, intelligently, willfully or intentionally.”


  1. “to hide, secret or withhold something from the knowledge of others”; or
  2. “to hide from observation, cover or keep from sight”; or
  3. “to prevent discovery of.”


  1. “a withholding of something;
  2. which one is bound or has a duty to reveal;
  3. so that the one entitled to be informed will remain in ignorance.”

Have questions about a consumer fraud matter? If so, call our office today. Ask for Mr. Niemann to personally discuss your questions and individual situation toll-free at (855) 376-5291 or e-mail him at

Fredrick P. Niemann Esq.



Consumer Act Fraud Attorney Serving These New Jersey Counties:

Atlantic County, Bergen County, Burlington County, Camden County, Cape May County, Cumberland County, Essex County,
Gloucester County, Hudson County, Hunterdon County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County,
Morris County, Ocean County, Passaic County, Salem County, Somerset County, Sussex County, Union County, Warren County