Family Dollar and Dollar General are being sued for advertising goods at one price, but charging customers a more expensive rate at the checkout counter. Authorities have found that the difference in advertised and actual price differed by 88 percent in some cases. (Photo by Andrew Ling/ Unsplash)

By Megan Sayles, AFRO Business Writer,
Report for America Corps Member,

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has sued two leading discount stores for deceptive pricing: Dollar General and Family Dollar. 

Yost sued Dollar General on Nov. 1 after receiving complaints from residents across multiple counties in the state, alleging that the variety store charged them higher prices for items at the counter than as advertised on the shelves. 

In a statement, Yost said he received 12 consumer complaints from March 2021 to August 2022 recounting pricing discrepancies, and one individual contended that they were charged $2 for shampoo that was listed as $1 on the shelf. 

Some consumers alleged they called attention to the inconsistencies, according to the statement, but the stores refused to alter the price. 

Ohio’s Department of Agriculture allows stores to have a 2 percent error rate on overcharges at a maximum, but in the statement, Yost said testing done in October by Butler County’s Department of Weights and Measures concluded that 20 Dollar General stores had error rates ranging from 16.7 percent to 88.2 percent. 

Yost sued Family Dollar, a chain owned by the Dollar Tree, for the same offense.

The majority of Dollar General and Family Dollar’s customer base are low- to middle-income families who depend on the discount stores for obtaining low-cost goods. Aside from misleading customers, deceptive pricing can have serious consequences for consumers’ budgets and income.

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