Antitrust & Trade Regulation Consumer Protection

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Interagency Guidance Issued Regarding Deposit Reconciliation Practices

Federal banking agencies have advised financial institutions to adopt deposit reconciliation policies and practices for customer accounts, and to effectively manage the institution’s deposit reconciliation practices to comply...more

Advertising Law - May 2016 #4

NAD Vacuums Up Preference Claims - In a challenge brought by a competing vacuum manufacturer, the National Advertising Division recommended that SharkNinja discontinue a claim that "Americans now choose Shark 2-to-1 over...more

FTC Releases New Guidance on FCRA Compliance for Employment Background Screening Companies

The FTC has released new guidance aimed at helping companies that conduct background screenings for employment purposes to determine whether they are “consumer reporting agencies” within the meaning of the federal FCRA....more

Texas Settles with PayPal over Money Transfer App Advertising and Privacy Practices

On Friday, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced a settlement with PayPal, resolving allegations that its Venmo money transfer app violated the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act by failing to clearly disclose how...more

Recent FTC Settlements Spotlight Hidden Ways to Hook Unwary Consumer

Brands of all kinds are increasingly using “influencers” or “brand ambassadors” to promote their brand’s products in blog posts and on social media platforms. But no matter whether they are style influencers with a fierce...more

Brainstorm: FTC Continues Enforcement Trend Against Cognitive Function Claims

Continuing its trend of scrutinizing claims touting improved cognitive function, the Federal Trade Commission recently announced a settlement with LearningRx Franchise Corp. (“LFC”), the developer and franchisor of a chain of...more

FTC Blocks Merger Between Staples and Office Depot

A federal court in Washington, D.C. issued an order blocking Staples' acquisition of Office Depot on the grounds that it would substantially lessen competition in the sale of consumable office supplies to national business...more

First Circuit Affirms FTC Social Media Order: Jerk.com users Jerked Around By Material Misrepresentations

In Fanning v. Federal Trade Commission, the First Circuit affirmed a summary decision of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which found that Jerk LLC, the operator of Jerk.com, materially misrepresented both the source of...more

FTC Issues Guidance on Consumer Reporting Obligations under the FCRA

On May 10, the FTC released new guidance on consumer reporting obligations under the FCRA. The guidance is intended to assist companies in understanding whether or not they are subject to consumer reporting requirements under...more

UK Competition and Markets Authority Consults on Proposals to Reform Retail Banking

The Competition and Markets Authority published a provisional decision on market issues regarding personal current accounts and retail banking services for small-and medium-sized enterprises. The decision is part of the CMA’s...more

Advertising Law - May 2016 #3

Fake Subscription Notices, Real FTC Lawsuit - Fake subscription notices are the subject of a new lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission in an Oregon federal court. The defendants, a web of dozens of...more

Social Media Competitions in the UK: Play Fair

With 1.65 billion users on Facebook, 332 million users on Twitter and 400 million on Instagram, it is unsurprising that many companies are seeking to increase brand awareness and customer engagement by running competitions...more

CMA warns UK estate agents against colluding in online portal selection

On 21 April 2016, the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) published an open letter to estate agents in the UK stressing the importance of making independent commercial decisions and warning them against unlawful...more

The Penn State Hershey–Pinnacle Merger: A Turning Point in FTC’s Enforcement Authority, or Just a Temporary Setback?

As we have reported previously, the Federal Trade Commission recently has taken an aggressive stance in regulating mergers in the healthcare sector. The Commission has racked up a string of victories, but last week the...more

Let’s Go Crazy: The FTC and FCC Launch “Parallel” Investigations Into Security Updates of Mobile Communications Industry

Earlier this week, the FTC and FCC announced “parallel” investigations into how carriers and mobile device makers release information on vulnerabilities, and how and when mobile security patches are distributed. The...more

Children's Privacy Online: The Interplay Between Mobile Applications and the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act

The activities of children on the internet, whether via computers, smart phones, or tablets, have grown exponentially in recent history. As internet access for children increased, parents began losing control of the amount...more

FTC Suffers Setback in Campaign to Slow the Rising Tide of Healthcare Consolidations

The FTC just suffered a major setback in its concerted efforts to challenge the ever growing number of consolidations in the healthcare industry, failing to secure a preliminary injunction to block a hospital merger in...more

A Sweet Win for Hershey Medical Center's Proposed Merger: District Court Denies FTC's Attempt to Block Pennsylvania Hospital...

The district court’s decision may mark a turning point away from purely formulaic reliance on the FTC’s preferred approach and the testimony of self-interested payers....more

ASA delivers knock-out blow to UK mobile network

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled that Three’s Muppet-themed ad, featuring a character victoriously punching into the air, which claimed that the mobile company was the ‘undisputed’ market leader in terms of...more

New Guidance Issued on FCRA Compliance in Employee Screening

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued new guidance to help background screening companies comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) when conducting background checks on current or prospective employees. The new...more

FTC Targets “All Natural” and “100% Natural” Claims on Personal Care Products

As we have previously reported, FDA is currently seeking public comments on the use of the term “natural” on food labeling. The announcement came as a surprise since FDA had previously declined requests from consumers, the...more

Polish Competition Authority Supports UBER

On 5 May 2016, the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) published a position paper in which it expressed its opinion on Uber’s operations on the Polish market for transportation services....more

FTC issues new FCRA guidance for employment background screening companies

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued new guidance for employment background screening companies containing information on how to comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). One of the key elements of this new...more

Credit Protection Association settles FCRA violations for $72,000

A debt collection agency, Credit Protection Association (CPA), settled with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) this week for its violations of the Fair Credit Report Act (FCRA) for $72,000. In the FTC’s complaint, the FTC...more

FTC Settles with Texas Payment Solutions Company to Resolve “Phone Bill Cramming” Allegations

On May 4, the FTC announced a $5.2 million proposed settlement with a Texas-based payment solutions company to resolve allegations that the company, in violation of a 1999 settlement order with the FTC, permitted third...more

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