Regulatory Compliance and Defense
FTC Defense Lawyer | FTC CID Response Attorney
The FTC (Federal Trade Commission) is the federal regulatory agency responsible for enforcing the Federal Trade Commission Act’s prohibition against unfair and deceptive marketing practices. FTC enforcement actions are some of the most serious threats against online businesses and marketers due to the associated substantial penalties.
- The 1995 Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) with subsequent amendments
- The 2003 National Do Not Call Registry
- The Dot Com Disclosures
- Native Advertising Guidelines
- Section 5 of the FTC Act ("unfair and deceptive marketing")
Surprisingly to many marketers, the FTC will seek to disgorge the entire net revenue during the entire time the offending action/practice was in use. Business owners may be also personally liable as the corporate veil does not shield decision makers from deceptive or fraudulent business practice claims. Our Internet and business attorneys assist businesses with pro-active preventative counsel as well as aggressive litigation defense and mitigating the effects of FTC Actions against marketers and online businesses.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC) & Attorney General Defense
The FTC Act’s prohibition on “unfair or deceptive acts or practices” broadly covers advertising claims, marketing and promotional activities, and sales practices in general. The Act is not limited to any particular medium and as such the Commission’s role in protecting consumers from unfair or deceptive acts or practices encompasses advertising, marketing, and sales online, as well as the same activities in print, television, telephone, and radio.
Common Actions Brought by the FTC and CA Attorney General
- CAN-SPAM Act
- Consumer Credit Protection Act
- Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA)
- California's Business and Professions Code Sections 17200 and 17500
- Lax or Deceptive Data Security and Privacy Practices
- Child Protection and Obscenity Enforcement Act (2257)
- False Claims Act (FCA)
In a 2015 groundbreaking case, the Court affirmed the FTC’s ability and authority to prosecute cases related to a company’s lax cyber security. The matter of FTC v. Wyndham Worldwide Corp set the stage for future actions brought by the FTC against companies of all sizes for exposing the data they collect from consumers to the threat of breach. Businesses of all sizes must take a proactive approach to cybersecurity and our internet attorneys can provide preventative counsel as well as aggressive cybersecurity defense.
FTC Civil Investigative Demand (CID)
The FTC investigates businesses and marketers both on and offline that are suspected of violating the FTC Act in some form or another through a special type of "pre-lawsuit" subpoena known as a Civil Investigative Demand (CID). CIDs are powerful pre-litigation tools the government frequently uses to investigate potential allegations of liability and are extremely disruptive, invasive, time-consuming and expensive to defend and mitigate.
The scope of information requested in CIDs has become more aggressive and increasingly broad in recent years. In some instances, CID recipients may be forced to produce hundreds of thousands of documents before the government is willing to discuss substantively the scope of the investigation or the conduct alleged. CID’s are judicially-enforceable demands for documents, written answers to interrogatory questions, and even provide testimony. There are many considerations a company or marketer must address when responding to a CID by a governmental agency.
If your business has been contacted by the FTC or Attorney General, schedule a consultation with an FTC Defense Attorney to learn more about your options.