The Penalty Under the Fraud Act Is Not a Punitive Measure

In Scott v. Ass'n for Childbirth at Home, International, 88 Ill. 2d 279, 430 N.E.2d 1012, 58 Ill. Dec. 761 (1981), the supreme court, in the context of addressing a due process argument, held that the Fraud Act was not penal. Scott, 88 Ill. 2d at 288. The court noted that the statute "is a regulatory and remedial enactment intended to curb a variety of fraudulent abuses and to provide a remedy to individuals injured by them. The Fraud Act is clearly within the class of remedial statutes which are designed to grant remedies for the protection of rights, introduce regulation conducive to the public good, or cure public evils." Scott, 88 Ill. 2d at 288. The court found that the fact that the Fraud Act contains a civil penalty component does not render it a penal statute. Scott, 88 Ill. 2d at 288. The supreme court stated that "the penalty is but one part of the regulatory scheme, intended as a supplemental aid to enforcement rather than as a punitive measure." Scott, 88 Ill. 2d at 288.