What can you buy for $43,792?  Well, you could buy a gym full of fancy exercise equipment, a kitchen full of the highest-end baking supplies, or that vacation on a deserted island that we all need right now.  Or, you could pay for just one violation of of a variety of provisions of Section 5 of the FTC Act. 

Today, the FTC announced that it had adjusted the maximum civil penalty amounts for violations of sixteen provisions of law that the FTC enforces.  This year, the FTC announced an increase from $43,280 to $43,792.  The change is required by federal law, which dictates that agencies must implement annual inflation adjustments based on a prescribed formula.  The new penalties apply to civil penalties after the effective date of the adjustment, even if the violation occurred previously.  

The FTC isn't entitled to civil penalties for just any violation of the FTC Act.  But, if you violate an FTC consent order or various FTC rules (such as the Mail Order Rule), then you're looking at a maximum civil penalty of $43,793 per violation.  So, don't believe the FTC when they tell you, "The FTC will never ask you to send money."  They will.

Originally Published by Frankfurt Kurnit, January 2021


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