It may look like just another legal document, but for American consumers, one of the most powerful tools for protecting their interests is within the four corners of an FTC settlement order.
In the market for a $430 case of shower caps or some “dolphin shaped craft embellishments”? Have they got a deal for you! But for people who thought they were paying $99 up front and $19 a month for a credit card, all they got was access to the defendants’ online store, which sold bulk quantities of off-brand, overpriced items.
To our knowledge, there’s no app yet that tells people when the FTC staff has sent warning letters discussing how the Fair Credit Reporting Act operates in the world of mobile applications. But the way the app market is growing, some savvy developer will have one out by the time you finish this. In the meantime, read on.
Six online marketers have settled FTC charges stemming from their use of fake news websites to market acai berry supplements and other weight loss products. If you’re an affiliate marketer or you’re thinking about building an affiliate program into your business plan, the cases merit your attention.
Of course, people are responsible for their debts. However, at a certain point, how much time has passed becomes an affirmative defense under state law and creditors can’t prevail in court. But what happens if a payment is made on a time-barred debt? A consumer can really get clocked — because in many states the debt can be revived if a person makes a payment or says in writing that they intend to. The FTC has announced a $2.5 million settlement with Asset Acceptance, LLC, for allegedly breaking the law in how it tried to collect
The BCP Business Center is here to help you comply with applicable laws. But we’re also committed to protecting business owners from deception. That’s why it’s important you have accurate information if you’re thinking about investing in precious metals. An ongoing FTC law enforcement action suggests that potential investors should step on the brakes if salespeople tout big money and low risks.
How consumers pay for things is changing. Pretty soon exasperated parents may start reminding kids that “mobile payments don’t grow on trees.” And if there’s a remake of “Jerry McGuire,” the sports agent may yell to his client “Show me the mobile payment!”
Last Friday, the FTC and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau signed a memorandum of understanding outlining how the agencies will work together. The CFPB — born out of the recent financial system overhaul — and the FTC now share responsibility for protecting consumers in the non-bank financial sector.
We’re glad you’re visiting the BCP Business Center and thanks for your questions. Here are answers to some of your AQs. (Calling them FAQs on a site devoted to truth in advertising doesn’t seem quite right.)
It may be tempting for a payment processor to look the other way about a client’s business practices, figuring it’s the merchant’s job to get proper consumer authorization for charges submitted for processing. But donning blinders can lead to regrettable results, as an FTC action against a payment processor shows.
When consumers comparison shop, cost is crucial. That’s why it’s so important for companies to make sure what they say about their prices is accurate. If businesses need a timely reminder, the FTC’s proposed $5 million settlement with CVS Caremark drives that point home.
The terms of an FTC settlement apply just to that business, of course. But clued-in companies know there’s a lot that can be learned from someone else’s alleged misstep. The FTC’s law enforcement action against Upromise is no exception.
Upromise offers users a service where they can save for college by getting rebates when they buy merchandise from participating retailers. But as the FTC charged in a recent law enforcement settlement, when it comes to consumer privacy and data security, the college savings membership program may want to consider a refresher course.
If you’re in the textile industry or sell home HVAC equipment (and especially if you’re in the textile industry and sell HVAC equipment, in which case we’re dying to know what your store looks like), you’ll want to jot down some important dates from the FTC.
It’s great to ring in the New Year, but there’s one thing savvy businesses don’t want to ring: a phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry or a company’s entity-specific list. A recent FTC law enforcement action — and stats from the FTC’s just-released Report to Congress on Do Not Call — emphasize the need for compliance.
Have you been mulling over the impact of facial detection and recognition technologies? We have — and we’d like to hear more about how you see things.
The Benedictine monks of St. Joseph Abbey, the Louisiana Embalming and Funeral Directors Act, and the policy goals of the FTC’s Funeral Rule. Not a likely trifecta, but an amicus brief filed by the FTC in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit raises interesting issues about the relationship between the three.
When the FTC brings a law enforcement action, we hope companies take notice. But sometimes there’s a nugget or two that businesses can glean from a decision by the FTC staff to close an investigation. A recent letter from the staff of the Bureau of Consumer Protection to Hyundai Motor America ticks a lot of timely boxes — bloggers, the Super Bowl, and the FTC’s Endorsement Guides — and is worth a read if your company has added social media to your marketing arsenal.
If your company has an online presence, you’re probably familiar with ICANN — the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers — the group that oversees Internet domain names. ICANN has announced a plan to dramatically increase the number of generic top-level domain names.
The FTC v. Lane Labs story started with shark cartilage and the latest chapter involves a contempt ruling from a federal judge. If the FTC’s advertising substantiation doctrine is relevant to your company or your clients — and it should be — you’ll want to keep tabs on the case.