Summary of Action
Alarmed and concerned, TINA.org sent complaint letters to NourishLife’s president, the Federal Trade Commission, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the Illinois Attorney General in March 2013.
By September, the company had made changes to its website that addressed the deceptive marketing issues identified by TINA.org, and confirmed that it was in the process of making changes to its product packaging and print brochures that mirror the website changes.
On October 2, 2013, TINA.org withdrew its complaints to the federal and state authorities regarding NourishLife’s deceptive marketing of Speak. (TINA.org did not withdraw its complaint to the FDA regarding the safety of the supplement, specifically, the elevated level of vitamin E present in the formula.)
In January 2015, the FTC filed suit in federal court against NourishLife and company CEO Mark Nottoli, alleging that the dietary supplement Speak was deceptively marketed as able to improve the speech of children with autism and other developmental disorders. The FTC also alleged that the company failed to disclose it had provided complimentary products to parents who endorsed the supplement in testimonials. Two days after filing its complaint, the FTC and NourishLife filed a settlement agreement that imposes a judgment of $3.68 million, which will be partially suspended – based on the defendants’ inability to pay – after the company pays $200,000 to be disbursed to consumers. The settlement agreement also requires NourishLife to stop making deceptive marketing claims about Speak. On August 24, 2015, the FTC announced that 6,936 consumers who lost money buying Speak will each receive a $25.18 refund.
By October 2016, NourishLife changed its name to Lifetrients, obtained a new website address (www.lifetrients.com), and now claims Speak is a supplement for children with “special nutritional requirements.”
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