Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices

News & Analysis as of

Bankruptcy Court Rejects Unfair-Practices Claim Against Insurer Accused of Aiding and Abetting Conversion of Trust Funds

A recent decision reminds us that North Carolina’s bankruptcy courts often rule on claims under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1. In re NC & VA Warranty Co. was an adversary proceeding in the bankruptcy of a warranty company....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

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

Municipal Advisor, School Consultant, and Associated Individuals Enter Settlement Offers with SEC after First-of-Its-Kind...

On June 13, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accepted the settlement offers made by two firms and three executives charged with using deceptive business practices in dealing with five school districts. As...more

CFPB Acts Against Lead Aggregator for Unfair and Abusive Practices

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently filed actions against online lead aggregator D and D Marketing, Inc. d/b/a T3Leads and its co-founders alleging unfair and abusive practices in violation of the...more

CFPB Orders National Bank to Pay $10 Million for Overdraft Practices

On July 14, 2016, the CFPB announced that it ordered a bank to pay $10 million in fines for its overdraft service practices. According to the CFPB, the bank’s telemarketing vendor used allegedly deceptive marketing and sales...more

Learning from Venmo’s Compliance Issues: How to Avoid Inadequate Privacy Disclosures

PayPal, the company responsible for the popular mobile payments app, Venmo, recently agreed to voluntarily bolster its privacy and security disclosures—and pay a $175,000 penalty—in response to an enforcement action brought...more

NY Attorney General Announces Infomercial Settlements

This week, the New York Attorney General announced that it had settled investigations with two companies for deceptive sales practices related to infomercials. ?One company agreed to pay $700,000 to settle the investigation...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

CFPB Continues Scrutiny of Payday Loans in Recent Report and Proposed Rule

Online payday loans can result in an array of "steep, hidden costs" for borrowers, according to the latest payday loan report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The report precedes potential new regulatory...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

CFPB Sanctions Law Firm and Debt Buyer For Failing to Review Account Documentation

On April 25, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) entered an enforcement order against New Jersey law firm Pressler and Pressler and its debt-buyer client, New Century Financial Services, for pursuing hundreds of...more

CFPB Releases Supervisory Report

In a special edition of its Supervisory Highlights publication, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) detailed its Supervision findings regarding the mortgage servicing industry's compliance with CFPB regulations....more

Exxon Sues Massachusetts AG to Block Civil Investigative Demand

On June 15, 2016, Exxon sued Massachusetts AG Maura Healey in federal court in Texas, seeking to bar the enforcement of AG Healey’s April 19, 2016 civil investigative demand, issued pursuant to M.G.L. c. 93A, the...more

Home Depot Challenges Banks’ Standing to Recover Losses Related to Data Breaches

In the aftermath of major data breaches at deep-pocketed retailers and other businesses, there is typically no shortage of litigants who move quickly to seek compensation from the business at which the breach occurred. But...more

Practice Fusion Settles With FTC for Deceptive Practices in Posting Consumer-Generated PHI

“I would like to make an appointment for my back pain and possible shingles. Can you please call me @ [phone number]. Thank you! [patient name]” – Patient Review, December 31, 2012 The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and...more

FTC Increases Maximum Civil Penalties for HSR Act, COPPA, and Other Violations from $16,000 to $40,000

On June 30, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued an interim final rule that substantially increases the maximum civil penalties for violations of the competition and consumer protection laws enforced by the FTC...more

FTC Workshop Examines Competition and Consumer Protection Issues in Rooftop Solar Industry

On June 21, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) held a workshop to examine competition and consumer protection issues in the rooftop solar industry—also known as solar “distributed generation.” Beyond exploring a wide...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

Federal Trade Commission Announces Increased Fines

On June 29, 2016, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced significant increases in the maximum civil penalties for violations of 16 provisions of law it enforces, including the FTC Act and Clayton Act. Effective...more

FTC Raises Maximum Civil Penalty to $40,000; HSR Act and Other Continuing Violations May Incur Civil Penalties of Over $14 million...

Key Points: The FTC is raising the maximum civil penalty that may be imposed for certain violations from $16,000 to $40,000. For HSR Act violations, where penalties may be imposed for each day the person is in...more

Nutter Bank Report, June 2016

The Nutter Bank Report is a monthly publication of the firm's Banking and Financial Services Group. Headlines 1. Agencies Publish Proposed Rule to Limit Incentive-Based Compensation Arrangements 2. Guidance on New...more

Payment Processor Hit With CFPB Action

A payment processor and two executives were the subject of a new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) action, with the Bureau charging that the defendants enabled their clients to make unauthorized withdrawals from...more

Can Failing Antitrust Claims Be Repackaged as Unfair Methods of Competition? The North Carolina Business Court Answers No

Although courts sometimes describe N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1 as an outgrowth of antitrust law, most 75-1.1 claims do not arise from antitrust fact patterns. SiteLink Software, LLC v. Red Nova Labs, Inc. is an exception....more

Novel Reading Of Statute Widens CFPB Jurisdiction

Tucked away in a seemingly innocuous paragraph in a complaint, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has asserted an extraordinary and potentially far-reaching expansion of its authority. On June 6, 2016, the CFPB...more

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