False Advertising

News & Analysis as of

False Ad Claims Fail to Crystalize as Court Dismisses Amended Complaint against Sharp Electronics with Prejudice

Dismissals of class action complaints with prejudice are not as common as dismissals with leave to replead, but a recent decision in the District of New Jersey illustrates the circumstances under which a dismissal with...more

NY Attorney General Tightens the Screws on Direct Marketing Industry

In a move that will no doubt have ripple effects across the direct marketing industry, the New York Attorney General has reached a settlement with two marketers regarding allegations of deceptive advertising practices. If...more

The FTC Social Media Consent Order Against SmartClick

The FTC continues its efforts to combat deceptive social media advertising. In June 2016, the FTC brought an enforcement action against SmartClick Media LLC and its owner. The FTC alleged that SmartClick engaged in the...more

American Spirit Cigarettes — Tobacco is back with ad deception…

On August 27, 2015, the Food and Drug Administration sent a warning letter to Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Co. Inc. and Reynolds American Inc., the company that owns Santa Fe Natural Tobacco and produces American Spirit...more

Advertising Law - July 2016 #3

Wikipedia Link Trips up Ninth Circuit False Ad Suit - Ruling that a California federal court incorrectly relied upon a Wikipedia link when considering a summary judgment motion in a false advertising suit, the Ninth...more

Slack-fill Litigation on the Rise

The recent filing of a proposed class action targeting Mondelez International, Inc. for the amount of empty space in its Sour Patch Watermelon candy boxes is the latest lawsuit targeting consumer goods manufacturers for...more

FTC Acts Against Warner Brothers’ YouTube Promotion Campaign: Disclosure of Affiliation Below the “Fold” Is Not Enough

Last week, the FTC announced an agreement containing a consent order, subject to final approval, resolving its claims against Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Inc. (“Warner Bros.”) for the company’s misleading use of social...more

FTC Consent Order Creates Uncertainty for Advertising of Credit, Lease Offers

A recent Federal Trade Commission (FTC) consent order with two Ohio auto dealers creates uncertainty not only for auto dealers, but also for all other businesses advertising credit or lease offers. The order settled...more

The Pleads Of The Many: 50 Years of Star Trek Lawsuits

This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the premiere of the original series of Star Trek, which first aired on NBC in September 1966. On July 22, this milestone will be marked in earnest when Paramount Pictures releases...more

FTC Approves Four Final Consent Orders Barring Companies from Making False All Natural Claims on Personal Care Products

On July 13, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that it had approved final consent orders against four companies that allegedly misrepresented their products as “All natural” or “100% Natural,” despite the fact...more

FTC Takes Action Against Personal Care Product Companies for Making False All-Natural Claims

The Federal Trade Commission has approved four final consent orders against companies that allegedly misrepresented their personal care products as "All-Natural" or "100% Natural," despite the fact that they contain man-made...more

Brand Names as False Advertising and Other Lessons on Comparative Product Testing

In theory, a product brand name can communicate a false advertising message, but it doesn’t happen often in practice. Such an instance was found to have occurred according to a recent decision by the National Advertising...more

Advertising Law - July 2016 #2

VW Will Pay $14.7B in Largest FTC False Ad Suit - Volkswagen made a $14.7 billion deal with the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Justice, and the California Attorney General over charges that the auto...more

$70 million assessed against J&J for boy who grew breasts from Risperdal

A Tennessee teen-ager suffered such emotional distress after growing enlarged breasts as an undisclosed side-effect of an anti-psychotic medication that the drug’s maker should pay him $70 million in damages, a Philadelphia...more

Certification Mark May Be Infringed Despite Nominative Fair Use, Lack of Source Confusion

Addressing the use of a certification mark in connection with information systems training, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed and remanded a district court grant of summary judgment for the defendants on...more

Second Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Sham Citizen Petition Claim, Summary Judgment on False Advertising Claims **WEB ONLY**

Addressing Sherman Act and Lanham Act claims arising out of an Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA), the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld the district court’s dismissal of the plaintiffs’ Sherman Act claim...more

App Developer Prevails in Class Action Lawsuit Challenging Shift to New Business Model

If you make available a service through a free app, and you subsequently decide to migrate users of that app to a paid subscription model, that shouldn’t create any problems, right?...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - July 2016

Environmental and Policy Focus - Judge invalidates long-fought Delta management plan Sacramento Bee - Jun 24 - In a decision that could delay or complicate Governor Jerry Brown’s plan to build two huge...more

Advertising Law - June 2016 #4

FTC Shuts Down Scam Touting Aid for Disabled Individuals - A telemarketer faces a Federal Trade Commission ban on claims that the sales of products would help disabled individuals....more

Law Firm’s Suit against Partner over Domain Name Highlights Essential Control of Proper Registration

Partners in a business rarely title real property in the name of one individual partner. Businesses do not let employees title bank accounts for the business in their individual names. Yet, when it comes to domain names,...more

LogMeIn Class Action Dismissed: Termination of Free App Not False Advertising

A judge in the Eastern District of California recently dismissed a class action filed against LogMeIn based on the company’s decision to terminate its free app, which allowed users to access a remote desktop computer via a...more

Eric Schneiderman’s Losing Lineup

Defenders of DFS like to point out that it is skill-predominant. If the same can be said for public prosecution, then New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has been fielding one hell of a losing lineup. Between the...more

Advertising Law - June 2016 #3

FTC Targets Spam, False Claims by Weight Loss Products - Alleging violations of the Federal Trade Commission Act and the CAN-SPAM Act, the Federal Trade Commission filed suit in Florida federal court against a pair of...more

Retail and Consumer Products Law Roundup - June 2016

President Signs Legislation Modernizing Federal Chemical Regulation Law - Overhaul of Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) has important business implications for consumer product manufacturers and retailers. ...more

When Do "Made in USA" Claims Spark the FTC's Attention?

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is tasked with preventing deception and unfairness in the marketplace, including with respect to advertising. One type of deception that the FTC targets involves false claims in advertising...more

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