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Substantiation for Advertising Claims

Posted by Clyde Hutchins | Sep 29, 2016 | 0 Comments

Substantiation for Advertising Claims

Companies making claims about the efficacy of their products must have a reasonable basis for those claims. The claims must be supported prior to publishing of the advertising claim. This is called "substantiation." It has long been a requirement for advertising claims, but has gained more notice in the dynamic world of online advertising.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued its Policy Statement Regarding Advertising Substantiation in 1984, which outlined the FTC's view about the requirement for substantiation of advertising claims. Any objective claim about a product represents that the advertiser has a reasonable basis to support that claim. Advertising about health and safety products commonly make these types of claims, and consequently are more likely to be subjected to scrutiny by the FTC. For instance, an advertisement for a green bean supplement might claim that users "lose an average of 15 pounds after taking the supplement for one month." This would be a claim about the efficacy of the supplement. The claim would have to be substantiated. It would have to be supported by competent and reliable scientific evidence. An advertiser's failure to possess prior substantiation for its advertising claims constitutes an unfair and deceptive act or practice in violation of the FTC Act.

Companies advertising supplements and other products that provide health benefits must be careful with meeting the substantiation requirements. It is very easy to exceed the conclusions found in studies and other scientific evidence when developing advertising for the product. If you are in need of assistance in meeting the substantiation claims, please feel free to contact Harmony Law for assistance.

About the Author

Clyde Hutchins

Clyde Hutchins is the founder of Harmony Law. Mr. Hutchins started his legal career in Cheyenne, Wyoming as a law clerk for the district court judges. Mr. Hutchins then entered private practice with a Wyoming based litigation and business law firm. Later, Mr. Hutchins went to Alaska, where he was the chief litigator for a firm that engaged in bond law, corporate law, securities law, and municipal law. The State of Wyoming hired Mr. Hutchins from Alaska to represent the State of Wyoming in the national tobacco arbitration and act as its tobacco settlement attorney. While in that position, as a hobby, he developed an enforcement unit for consumer protection for Wyoming residents. Mr. Hutchins moved to Colorado in 2016 and founded Harmony Law, LLC. Harmony Law is primarily engaged in civil litigation. It is also a general practice firm in the areas of business law, estate planning, consumer law and family law. Harmony Law is active in all state and federal courts throughout Wyoming and Colorado.

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Harmony Law engages in litigation in Wyoming and Colorado. If you have a serious dispute or have been sued, feel free to call 970-488-1857 and speak with Mr. Hutchins.

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