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FTC Takes First Action under COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act

  • The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) charged chiropractor Eric Nepute and his company Quickwork LLC (collectively, “Quickwork”) with allegedly using false and deceptive claims to market products as scientifically proven to treat or prevent COVID-19 in violation of the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act and the FTC Act. This is the FTC’s first action under the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act.
  • The complaint alleges that Quickwork made unsubstantiated health claims when marketing products containing vitamin D and zinc as effective to treat or prevent COVID-19, including claiming that these products could be more effective than COVID-19 vaccines, and that Quickwork continued to market its products with these baseless claims after the FTC issued a warning letter.
  • The complaint seeks injunctive relief, rescission or reformation of contracts, refunds, restitution, disgorgement, and costs.
  • FTC Chairwoman Slaughter and Commissioners Phillips, Chopra, and Wilson testified this week before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, regarding the FTC’s efforts to protect consumers from COVID-19-related fraud, including issuing hundreds of warning letters and educating consumers and businesses, as well as protecting renters from unlawful actions. The FTC’s COVID-19-related efforts are detailed in a recently released report, “Protecting Consumers During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Year in Review.”