FTC Updates (June 3-7, 2024)

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The first week of June brought two votes on final rules from the FTC, including the Amplifier Rule and Racetrack Safety Rule.
United States Consumer Protection
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The first week of June brought two votes on final rules from the FTC, including the Amplifier Rule and Racetrack Safety Rule. Further, the FTC finalized a proposed settlement and consumer redress regarding Lurn, Inc.'s deceptive advertisings. All this and more after the jump:

Monday, June 3, 2024

Bureau of Competition: Healthcare, Policy Planning, State Legislation

  • The FTC's Office of Policy Planning sent a letter to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in support of HB 1663, the Fair Contracting for Health Care Practitioners Act (the "Act"). The Act restricts the use of noncompetes for certain health care practitioners in Pennsylvania. The letter highlights the FTC's findings regarding the harmful effects of noncompetes in support of the Act. The letter also highlights that the FTC's final rule regarding noncompetes does not preempt state laws that are not in conflict with the rule and may play an important role in helping curb harmful noncompetes within the state of Pennsylvania.

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Bureau of Consumer Protection: Consumer Goods, Technology, Entertainment

  • The FTC issued final amendments to the Amplifier Rule, or formally, the Rule Relating to Power Output Claims for Amplifiers Utilized in Home Entertainment Products, which helps consumers make direct comparisons of home entertainment amplifiers. The Amplifier Rule regulates power output-based claims for home entertainment amplifiers and the amendments modernize the rule as well as require uniform test conditions for amplifiers when sellers make certain claims regarding power output. The rule was originally enacted in 1974 in response to widespread amplifier advertisements that relied on deceptive testing methods. In December 2020, the FTC issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking seeking public comments and in July 2022, the FTC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking seeking further comments. Finally, in July 2023, the FTC issued a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking for public comment. The FTC has now approved a Federal Register notice announcing the final rule with a 5-0 vote from the commissioners.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Bureau of Consumer Protection: Deceptive Marketing

  • The FTC submitted a proposed court order to require Lurn, Inc., and key employees to stop their unlawful and deceptive business practices and pay $2.5 million to the FTC for consumer redress. In October 2021, the FTC sent Lurn Notices of Penalty Offense letters regarding the money-making and testimonial advertising used by Lurn and noting that Lurn could be subject to civil penalties for marketing claim violations. The FTC filed a complaint against Lurn in September 2023 alleging that the online coaching company made false claims deceiving consumers about the amount of money that could be made using Lurn's products (such as "Stay-At-Home-Millionaire" advertisements) allegedly leading to $65 million charged to consumers between 2019 and 2022. The complaint alleged that Lurn had no data to back up any of the claims made in their advertisements. The FTC will send redress payments to 1,922 consumers that purchased business coaching programs from Lurn.

Friday, June 7, 2024

Bureau of Consumer Protection: Horseracing

  • The FTC issued an order approving the proposed modification from the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority to its Racetrack Safety Rule, with the commissioners voting 5-0 to approve the modification. Overall, the modification seeks to enhance the safety and welfare of horses and individuals involved in horseraces. The modification adds and edits several sections and definitions to aid in the proper interpretation and application of the rules. The Authority proposes rules under the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act and the FTC approves such rules, if consistent with the Act. On April 8, 2024, the FTC published the proposed rule in the Federal Register and provided an opportunity for public comment. The approved modification will go into effect on July 8, 2024.

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