Photo of Donnelly L. McDowell

If you’ve been shopping lately, it’s likely that you’ve encountered empty shelves and shortages of items, such as (for inexplicable reasons) toilet paper. This tends to happen whenever a disaster – whether that’s a hurricane or COVID-19 – strikes. In some cases, retailers respond to these shortages by increasing prices. Although there may be legitimate

The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) alleging that Airbnb is violating the FTC Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by assigning “secret ratings to prospective renters, based on behavior traits using an opaque, proprietary algorithm.”  EPIC is a non-profit that seeks to advance

The CFPB announced today a policy statement outlining three new principles that it intends to apply when evaluating whether practices are “abusive” under the Dodd-Frank Act.  The Dodd-Frank Act marked the first time that a federal or state regulator was granted the authority to regulate broadly “abusive” acts and practices.  While Dodd-Frank provided a general

The FTC today announced two new actions under the Consumer Review Fairness Act against companies (CRFA) that allegedly used non-disparagement provisions in consumer form contracts in connection with selling their respective services to help rent properties.  The two actions follow three CRFA actions last month, which we discussed here.

In the complaint against Shore

The CFPB released its proposed rule governing debt collection, which would impose new requirements for debt collectors related to when and how a consumer can be contacted, what can and must be said when a consumer is reached, and the procedures to validate and verify a debt.  Industry and other stakeholders have long anticipated the

This morning, the FDA announced its intention to engage in greater oversight of the dietary supplement industry.  The announcement also conveyed that the Agency had sent 12 warning letters and five advisory letters to companies over the prior two weeks.  Some of these letters were jointly issued by FDA and the Federal Trade Commission, focusing

The Federal Trade Commission has long supported advertising industry self-regulation as a means of promoting truthfulness and accuracy in advertising. One of the key aspects of this success has been threat of referral to the FTC: Advertisers that refuse to participate in the self-regulatory process or refuse to comply with recommendations after participating are referred

While many today returned to work after the Holiday season, things remained quieter than usual here in the nation’s capital – with many federal workers furloughed until further notice as the federal government continues to be in a partial shutdown.  President Trump is reportedly meeting with congressional leaders today ahead of Thursday’s start to a

Earlier this year, the Federal Trade Commission released new business guidance for direct sellers and multilevel marketers describing the legal principles that it will apply when evaluating practices under the FTC Act. Law360 published the article “What The FTC Said About Direct Selling In 2018,” co-authored by partner John Villafranco and senior associate Donnelly McDowell.  

The Senate today confirmed Kathleen Kraninger as CFPB Director by a party-line, 50-49 vote, with Sen. Tillis abstaining.  Kraninger will replace current Acting Director Mick Mulvaney, who also currently oversees Kraninger at the Office of Management Budget (OMB) where she is associate director of general government and Mulvaney is Director. Kraninger is expected to continue