Company Paid $25 Million for Refunds to Settle FTC Charges of Deceptive Advertising
In connection with the Federal Trade Commission’s settlement with Reebok International Ltd, a settlement administrator is mailing approximately 315,000 checks to consumers who bought allegedly deceptively advertised toning shoes and apparel from the company.
Ads for Reebok’s toning shoes claimed that sole technology featuring pockets of moving air creates “micro instability” that tones and strengthens muscles as you walk or run.
As part of its efforts to stem overhyped health claims, the FTC last year alleged that Reebok deceptively advertised its “toning shoes” by claiming that consumers wearing the shoes would strengthen and tone leg and buttock muscles more than by wearing regular shoes. Reebok paid $25 million for refunds as part of its settlement agreement with the agency.
The amount each consumer gets back is based on the amount the consumer claimed to have spent on the products. Consumers will receive approximately 87 percent of the amount on their claim forms that was submitted and approved. The deadline for filing a refund request has expired.
Under the terms of the FTC settlement, the funds were made available through a court-approved class action lawsuit. Rust Consulting, Inc., the court approved settlement administrator, will begin mailing the checks on August 8, 2012 to eligible consumers who submitted a valid claim for a refund. The checks must be cashed on or before November 6, 2012. Consumers who have questions should call 1-888-398-5389. The FTC never requires consumers to pay money or provide information before redress checks can be cashed.
Consumers should carefully evaluate advertising claims for work-out gear and exercise equipment. For more information see: How's that Work-out Working Out? Tips on Buying Fitness Gear.
The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, visit the FTC's online Complaint Assistant or call 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). The FTC enters complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 2,000 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. The FTC’s website provides free information on a variety of consumer topics. Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.(FTC File No. 1023070; Civ. Action No. 1:11-cv-02046-DCN)(Reebok NR)
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