Summary of Action

In 2005, the Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit against Obesity Research Institute and others for their alleged deceptive marketing of certain dietary supplements.  That lawsuit resulted in a Court Order that permanently prohibits Obesity Research Institute from making a number of marketing claims about its products, including, for example, claims that its products can cause substantial weight loss without the need for physical activity or a change in diet.

TINA.org investigated Obesity Research Institute’s marketing and found evidence that it is violating the 2005 Order in several ways.  The company is now advertising a weight-loss supplement called Lipozene and claims, among other things, that users can lose substantial weight (e.g., “400% more weight,” “35 pounds in 10 weeks”) without any change in diet or exercise.

TINA.org’s investigation also revealed additional deceptive marketing issues not raised in the 2005 FTC lawsuit, including that the company makes false “Made in the USA” claims in some of its commercials, and may bind consumers to a negative option offer without adequately notifying them and without receiving their informed and express consent prior to obtaining consumers’ billing information.

As a result, TINA.org sent a letter on April 7, 2016 to the FTC urging it to reopen its investigation of Obesity Research Institute and take appropriate enforcement action.

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