The National Advertising Division (NAD) affirmed that Reckitt Benckiser, Inc.’s claim of “#1 Carpet Cleaning Brand” for its Resolve Carpet Cleaner product line is supported by the appropriate underlying unit sales data. Responding to a challenge brought by BISSELL Homecare, Inc., NAD noted that Reckitt Benckiser’s “#1 Brand” claim is properly understood to mean that the brand itself, rather than any specific product, holds the highest market share in its relevant category. To that, Nielsen tracking data for units of products sold to consumers in the “carpet cleaning brand” category supports Reckitt Benckiser’s “#1 Brand” sales superiority claim for the Resolve products. Still, NAD noted that Reckitt Benckiser fails to properly identify the time period and scope for the relevant data in its disclaimer. Reckitt Benckiser has agreed to comply with NAD’s recommendation of a modified disclaimer in the future use of its “#1 Brand” claim.

Continue Reading Be My #1 – NAD Scrutinizing Top Ratings Claims

The balance of power at the CPSC will shift after Acting Chairman Ann Marie Buerkle’s surprising announcement that she will leave the CPSC this fall. Buerkle has served as a CPSC Commissioner for six years and the Acting Chairman of the agency for almost half that time. President Trump has nominated Buerkle to be the permanent Chairman three times (2017, 2018, and 2019), but each time the Senate failed to vote on her nomination. Buerkle announced she is withdrawing her 2019 nomination to become the permanent Chairman and to serve an additional seven-year term. She will continue as Acting Chairman until September 30 and will complete the remainder of her term as Commissioner until October 27. She says that afterward, she will “pursue new opportunities that will allow me to continue my life’s work of advocacy and public service as well as spend more time with my six children and eighteen grandchildren.”

Continue Reading Recall Roundup: June

Many retailers use bonus programs to incentivize employee performance. With respect to bonuses paid to non-exempt employees (i.e., those employees who are entitled to overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act), the retailer must then determine whether it owes additional overtime on the incentive bonus.

Continue Reading Must a Retailer Pay Additional Overtime on Incentive Bonuses Paid to Non-exempt Employees? DOL Opinion Letter Says, “It Depends”

Anyone who uses a mobile device knows there are times when hands-free is a necessity. Enter National Products, Inc., a US maker of RAM® Mounts for securely mounting electronic devices—including phones, tablets, laptops and radar detectors—in cars, trucks, bikes and boats, among other vehicles.

Continue Reading “Mounting” an Offense in the ITC to Stop Foreign Knockoffs at the Border

The FTC and the FDA jointly sent warning letters to four manufacturers of flavored e-liquid products, citing the absence of particular disclosures in paid social media endorsements as potentially in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and the FTC Act.

Continue Reading FTC and FDA Warn e-Liquid Companies to Disclose Hazards and Connections

Social media can be a minefield of intellectual property issues. The hashtag, for example, began as a searching tool, but now has evolved into its own form of communication. And if a hashtag can include a trademark or otherwise represent a brand, when can you use someone else’s trademark in a hashtag?

Continue Reading District Court Finds Use of Third-Party Hashtags Created Implied Association

The Federal Trade Commission entered proposed final orders settling June 2018 charges filed against several online marketers of e-cigarettes, dietary supplements and skin creams for deceptively advertising “risk free” trial offers.

Continue Reading FTC Stops “Free Trial” Marketers

Historically, foreign investors in U.S. retailers have not considered as a potential impediment to raising capital or M&A activity the clearance of such transactions under the foreign investment regulations administered by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS or the Committee). Recent actions by CFIUS, however, suggest that foreign investment in any U.S. company, including retailers, that collects sensitive personal data of U.S. citizens is at potential risk of CFIUS review and remedial action, particularly where the transaction involves Chinese investors. Continue Reading CFIUS: A Potential Threat to Retail M&A?

Court rulings interpreting the Consumer Product Safety Act (CSPA) are rare because parties subject to the act typically resolve any issues directly with the CPSC through administrative actions or settlements. This month, the Seventh Circuit issued such a rare ruling, which makes it more difficult for manufacturers, distributors or retailers to argue the statute of limitations has run on failure-to-report claims.

Continue Reading Recall Roundup: May