Statutes Enforced or Administered by the Commission

The Commission has enforcement or other responsibilities under more than 70 laws. They appear, below, with the Commission’s primary statutes (the Federal Trade Commission Act and the Clayton Act) listed first followed by all other statutes in alphabetical order.

Displaying 1 - 20 of 71

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Clayton Act

Mission:

Competition

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 12-27, as amended

The Commission is charged under Sections 3, 7 and 8 of this Act with preventing and eliminating unlawful tying contracts, corporate mergers and acquisitions, and interlocking directorates. This Act was amended by the Robinson-Patman Act, Pub. L. No. 74-692, 49 Stat. 1526, codified at 15 U.S.C. §§ 13, 13b, and 21a, under which the Commission is authorized to prevent certain practices involving discriminatory pricing and product promotion. The Hart-Scott-Rodino Act (HSR), adding Section 7A of the Clayton Act,  is listed separately.

Federal Trade Commission Act

Mission:

Competition

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 41-58, as amended

The Federal Trade Commission Act is the primary statute of the Commission. Under this Act, as amended, the Commission is empowered, among other things, to (a) prevent unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce; (b) seek monetary redress and other relief for conduct injurious to consumers; (c) prescribe rules defining with specificity acts or practices that are unfair or deceptive, and establishing requirements designed to prevent such acts or practices; (d) gather and compile information and conduct investigations relating to the organization, business, practices, and management of entities engaged in commerce; and (e) make reports and legislative recommendations to Congress and the public. A number of other statutes listed here are enforced under the FTC Act.

Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. 109-8 No. 109-8, 119 Stat. 23, §§ 1301-1309, codified in relevant part to 15 U.S.C. §§1637-1638,1664 and 1665b

This Act amends the Truth in Lending Act in various respects, including requiring certain disclosures. Some of its disclosure requirements were superseded by later amendments to the Truth in Lending Act such as the Credit CARD Act of 2009.  This Act also includes provisions for rulemaking and study involving FTC participation.

See also: http://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?req=granuleid:USC-prelim-title15-section1664&edition=prelim

Children's Online Privacy Protection Act

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 6501-6506

This Act protects children's privacy by giving parents tools to control what information is collected from their children online. The Act requires the Commission to promulgate regulations requiring operators of commercial websites and online services directed to children under 13 or knowingly collecting personal information from children under 13 to: (a) notify parents of their information practices; (b) obtain verifiable parental consent for the collection, use, or disclosure of children’s personal information; (c) let parents prevent further maintenance or use or future collection of their child’s personal information; (d) provide parents access to their child’s personal information; (e) not require a child to provide more personal information than is reasonably necessary to participate in an activity; and (f) maintain reasonable procedures to protect the confidentiality, security, and integrity of the personal information. In order to encourage active industry self-regulation, the Act also includes a "safe harbor" provision allowing industry groups and others to request Commission approval of self-regulatory guidelines to govern participating websites’ compliance with the Rule.

College Scholarship Fraud Prevention Act of 2000

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 106-420, 114 Stat. 1867, codified in relevant part at 20 U.S.C. § 1092d

This Act requires the FTC, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of Education to jointly submit a report to Congress each year on fraud in the offering of college education financial assistance services. Each report must contain an assessment of the nature and quantity of incidents of such fraud during the previous year. The FTC is also directed to work with the Secretary of Education in maintaining a scholarship fraud awareness site on the Department of Education's website.

Comprehensive Smokeless Tobacco Health Education Act of 1986

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 4401-4408

This Act, as amended by the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, requires manufacturers, packagers, and importers of smokeless tobacco products to place one of four statutorily-prescribed, health-related warning labels on product packages and in advertisements, on a rotational basis, as reviewed and approved by the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. The Act prohibits any advertising of smokeless tobacco products on radio, television, or other media regulated by the Federal Communications Commission. The Commission is authorized to enforce the Actexcept that sections 12 through 15 of the FTC Act do not apply to the language of warning labels appearing in advertisements.

See also:

Consumer Leasing Act

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 1667-1667f

This Act, amending the Truth in Lending Act, regulates personal property leases that exceed four months in duration and that are made to consumers for personal, family, or household purposes. The Act requires that certain lease costs and terms be disclosed, imposes limitations on the size of penalties for delinquency or default and on the size of residual liabilities, and requires certain disclosures in lease advertising.

Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003 (CAN-SPAM Act)

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C §§ 7701-7713

This Act establishes requirements for those who send unsolicited commercial email. The Act bans false or misleading header information and prohibits deceptive subject lines. It also requires that unsolicited commercial email be identified as advertising and provide recipients with a method for opting out of receiving any such email in the future.  In addition, the Act directs the FTC to issue rules requiring the labeling of sexually explicit commercial email as such and establishing the criteria for determining the primary purpose of a commercial email.

Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 (Credit CARD Act)

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 111-24, 123 Stat. 1734, codified in relevant part to 15 U.S.C. §§ 1601-1667f, 1681 et seq. and 1693 et seq.

This Act (a) amends the Truth in Lending Act to prescribe open-end credit lending procedures and enhanced disclosures to consumers, limit related fees and charges to consumers, increase related penalties, and establish constraints and protections for issuance of credit cards to minors and students (numerous sections); (b) amends the Electronic Fund Transfer Act to address fees and other terms of gift certificates, store gift cards, and general-use prepaid cards (Sections 401-402); (c) amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act by requiring FTC rulemaking to mandate that advertisements for free credit reports disclose that free credit reports are available under Federal law at annualcreditreport.com and by protecting young consumers from prescreened credit offers (Sections 205, 302); and (d) amends the Mortgage Related Provisions of the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009 to clarify the FTC’s rulemaking authority under that Act (Section 511). The Dodd-Frank Act transferred these rulemaking authorities to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. This Act also requires other rulemaking, studies and activities involving FTC participation. See also:

Credit Repair Organizations Act

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 1679-1679j

This Act, Title IV of the Consumer Credit Protection Act, prohibits untrue or misleading representations and requires certain affirmative disclosures in the offering or sale of "credit repair" services. The Act bars companies offering credit repair services from demanding advance payment, requires that credit repair contracts be in writing, and gives consumers certain contract cancellation rights.

Crimes Against Charitable Americans Act of 2001

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Section 1011 of the USA Patriot Act, Pub. L. No. 107-56, 115 Stat. 272, codified in relevant part at 15 U.S.C. § 6102 and § 6106

Section 1011 amends the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act to cover “charitable solicitations.” It requires the FTC to expand the scope of the Telemarketing Sales Rule to cover for-profit third parties that solicit charitable contributions on behalf of non-profit charities. The Act further specifies that the FTC's telemarketing rules must include a requirement that anyone engaged in telemarketing for the solicitation of charitable contributions must clearly disclose that as the purpose of the call and authorizes the FTC to prescribe other disclosures it considers appropriate.

See also: http://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?req=granuleid:USC-prelim-title15-section6106&edition=prelim

Deep Seabed Hard Minerals Act

Mission:

Competition

Law:

Pub. L. No. 96-283, 94 Stat. 553, codified in relevant part at 30 U.S.C. § 1413

Under Section 103(d) of this Act, the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the Department of Commerce must provide the Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission with an opportunity to review and make recommendations concerning the antitrust implications of proposed licenses for the extraction of minerals from deep seabed sites.

Defense Production Act of 1950

Mission:

Competition

Law:

Pub. L. No. 81–774, 123 Stat. 2006, codified in relevant part at 50 U.S.C. § 4558

Section 708 of the Act requires the Commission and the Department of Justice to participate in developing, implementing, monitoring, and reporting on voluntary agreements among industry members, pursuant to federal determination of need and federal oversight, that are aimed at solving production and distribution problems impairing national defense preparedness (such as a voluntary agreement to make ships, services, and facilities available to the Department of Defense in case of military emergency). The Act establishes a limited antitrust exemption for such voluntary agreements.

Do-Not-Call Registry Legislation

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 6151-6155

The Do-Not-Call Implementation Act authorizes the FTC to collect fees for the implementation and enforcement of a Do-Not-Call Registry. Public Law No. 108-82 expressly authorizes the FTC under Section 3(a)(3)(A) of the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act to implement and enforce a Do-Not-Call Registry, and ratified the Registry provision of the FTC’s Telemarketing Sales Rule, 16 C.F.R. § 310.4(b)(1)(iii). The Implementation Act has been amended by the Do-Not-Call Registry Fee Extension Act of 2007, specifying the Registry fees for telemarketers and revising reporting requirements in the Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act; and by the Do-Not-Call Improvement Act of 2007, prohibiting automatic expiration of registry listings.

Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Titles X and XIV

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376, codified in relevant part at 12 U.S.C. § 5301, §§ 5481-5603, and in laws amended (Title X); and 12 U.S.C. § 5481 note, 15 U.S.C. § 1601 note, § 1602, and § 1631 et seq. (Title XIV)

Title X of this Act creates a new Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection within the Federal Reserve Board as a new supervisor for certain financial firms and as a rulemaker and enforcer against unfair, deceptive, abusive, or otherwise prohibited practices relating to most consumer financial products or services. The Act transfers most of the FTC’s rulemaking authority and one study requirement to the Bureau but the FTC retains all of its enforcement authority and some rulemaking authority.

The Act further provides for FTC/Bureau coordination regarding certain rulemaking and enforcement activities. The Act provides authority for each agency to enforce some of the other’s rules with respect to consumer financial practices. The Act also authorizes FTC rulemaking for certain motor vehicle dealers under standard Administrative Procedure Act procedures rather than the procedures set forth in the FTC Act.

In addition, the Act amends the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (a) to provide for limitations on interchange transaction fees; (b) to prohibit exclusive payment networks and routing restrictions for debit cards; (c) to limit the restrictions that credit and debit card networks may impose on retailers regarding discounts or transaction amount limits based on form of payment, and (d) to provide standards for remittance fee practices. It also provides for improved financial disclosures, including integration of mortgage disclosures under the Truth in Lending Act and the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.

Title XIV of the Act amends the Truth in Lending Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, and other consumer financial laws to prevent mortgage-related abuses and to improve availability of responsible, affordable mortgage credit. It addresses compensation-based incentives; inappropriate steering, discrimination, and other abusive, unfair, deceptive, or predatory practices; minimum federal lending standards; high-cost mortgages; mortgage servicing; and appraisals. Title XIV provides a new enforcement role for the FTC regarding home appraisals.

Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

16 U.S.C. § 1385

The Act makes it unlawful under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act for any producer, importer, exporter, distributor, or seller of any tuna product that is exported from or offered for sale in the United States to claim that its product is "dolphin safe," if it contains tuna harvested in a manner harmful to dolphins as set forth in the Act.

Electronic Fund Transfer Act

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

15 U.S.C. §§ 1693-1693r

This Act (Title IX of the Consumer Credit Protection Act) establishes the rights, liabilities and responsibilities of participants in electronic fund transfer systems. The Act requires financial institutions to adopt certain practices respecting such matters as transaction accounting, and error resolution, requires financial institutions and others to have certain procedures for preauthorized transfers, and sets liability limits for losses caused by unauthorized transfers. The Credit CARD Act and the Dodd-Frank Act made substantial amendments to this Act.

Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007

Mission:

Competition

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 110-140, 121 Stat. 1492, codified in relevant part at 42 U.S.C. § 17021 and §§ 17301-17305

Section 205 of the Act (42 U.S.C. § 17021) requires the Commission to issue rules for the labeling of biodiesel or biodiesel blend fuel sold at retail.

Sections 811-815 of this Act (42 U.S.C. §§ 17301-17305) (1) prohibit any manipulative or deceptive device or contrivance in connection with the wholesale purchase or sale of crude oil, gasoline, or other petroleum distillate in contravention of rules or regulations the Commission may prescribe; and (2) prohibit reporting false or misleading information related to the wholesale price of crude oil, gasoline, or petroleum distillates to a federal department or agency if the actor (a) was legally required to report the information, (b) knew or reasonably should have known, that the information was false or misleading, and (c) intended for the false or misleading information to affect the integrity of data compiled by the department or agency for statistical or analytical purposes with respect to the market for crude oil, gasoline, or petroleum distillates.

See also: http://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?req=granuleid:USC-prelim-title42-section17301&edition=prelim

Energy Policy Act of 1992

Mission:

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 102-486, 106 Stat. 2776, codified in relevant part at 15 U.S.C. §§ 2821-2824, 15 U.S.C. § 3203 note; 16 U.S.C. § 2621 note; 42 U.S.C. §§ 6201-6202; 42 U.S.C. § 6291 et seq.; 42 U.S.C. § 13232

This Act amends the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, requiring, among other things, that the Commission issue: (a) disclosure rules to assist consumers in choosing the most efficient incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs; (b) efficiency labeling rules for certain plumbing fixtures; and (c) labeling requirements concerning the costs and benefits of non-petroleum alternative fuels and alternative-fueled vehicles. The Act requires the Commission to enforce energy efficiency labeling rules issued by the Department of Energy for high intensity discharge lamps, distribution transformers, and small electric motors. It authorizes the Commission to issue efficiency labeling rules for windows, commercial office equipment, and luminaries if the Department of Energy develops energy efficiency testing procedures for such products. The Act also amends the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act establishing automotive fuel posting and certification requirements for all liquid automotive fuels, including alternative fuels.

Energy Policy Act of 2005

Mission:

Competition

Consumer Protection

Law:

Pub. L. No. 109-58, 119 Stat. 594, codified in relevant part primarily at 42 U.S.C. §§ 6294, 7545, 16471

Under this Act, the Commission is required to: (a) issue regulations for energy efficiency labeling of a number of household appliances and plumbing fixtures, if specified conditions are met (Section 137, 42 U.S.C. § 6294); and (b) submit to Congress an annual market concentration analysis of the ethanol production industry to determine whether there is sufficient competition among industry participants to avoid anticompetitive behavior (Section 1501, 42 U.S.C. § 7545). The Commission may issue rules on consumer privacy, change of service provider, and sale of goods and services regarding consumers of electricity (Section 1287, 42 U.S.C. § 16471). Pursuant to Section 1815 of this Act, the Commission participates in an inter-agency task force on electric industry competition.

See also:

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