[481M-11] Unconscionability. (a) With respect to a lease-purchase transaction, if the court as a matter of law finds the transaction, agreement, or any clause of the agreement to have been unconscionable at the time it was made, the court may:

(1) Refuse to enforce the agreement;

(2) Enforce the remainder of the agreement without the unconscionable clause; or

(3) Limit the application of any unconscionable clause to avoid any unconscionable result.

(b) If it is claimed or appears to the court that the transaction, agreement, or clause may be unconscionable, the parties shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to present evidence as to its setting, purpose, and effect to aid the court in making a determination related to unconscionability.

(c) If, in an action in which unconscionability is claimed, the court finds unconscionability pursuant to this section, the court may award the costs of the action and reasonable attorney fees to the lessee. If the court does not find unconscionability and does find that the lessee claiming unconscionability brought or maintained an action that the lessee knew to be groundless, the court may award the costs of the action and reasonable attorney fees to the party against whom the claim was made. In determining attorney fees, the amount of recovery claimed on behalf of the lessee shall not be controlling.

(d) The remedies of this section shall be in addition to remedies otherwise available for the same conduct authorized under law other than in this chapter, but double recovery of actual damages shall be prohibited.

(e) For the purpose of this section, a charge or practice expressly permitted by this chapter shall not be unconscionable. [L 1997, c 248, pt of 1]


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