Price Gouging Laws

Charging “unconscionable prices” for essential items in short supply prior to a disaster and during the early recovery period is illegal. An “unconscionable price” is determined by comparing the price asked during an emergency with the price charged for the same commodity during the preceding 30-day period.
Examples of essential items include, but are not limited to: food, ice, generators, lanterns and lumber.
Merchants cannot charge excessive prices unless the increases in prices are attributable to the cost increases incurred by them.

Miami-Dade County and Florida price gouging laws are triggered by a declaration of a state of emergency. At that point, providers of goods can be prosecuted if they use a disaster to hike prices.