MLM News Alert


Welcome to TINA.org’s MLM News Alert page. Here you will find timely and pertinent information related to the MLM industry, including breaking news, legal updates and more. 

[ November 23, 2021 ] Jeunesse Global: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) issued a case decision finding that Jeunesse Global, a Florida-based MLM that sells beauty and wellness products, uses atypical earnings claims to market its business opportunity, including the ability to earn $100,000 a month. According to the DSSRC, the company removed several posts at issue. The DSSRC closed its investigation and said it would continue to check on the status of a remaining video that was marked private rather than removed.

[ November 11, 2021 ] Daxen, Inc.: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) issued a case decision finding that Daxen, Inc., a California-based MLM that sells dietary supplements, food and beverage, personal care and household products, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims to market products, including the ability to lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol, and prevent anemia, cancer, Alzheimer’s, tuberculosis and diabetes, among other medical conditions. According to the DSSRC, the company removed several of the posts at issue, but certain ones remained at the time the investigation was closed. The DSSRC recommended that Daxen take all necessary steps to remove the remaining posts.

[ November 8, 2021 ] dōTERRA: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision regarding the Utah-based essential oils MLM finding that it was again using unsubstantiated health and earnings claims to market its products and business opportunity. This is the second time the DSSRC investigated the company — the first was in 2019-2020 following a TINA.org complaint. This investigation also comes after an FTC warning letter to the company, as well as reviews by the National Advertising Division and the National Advertising Review Board. According to the DSSRC, dōTERRA removed certain deceptive claims but designated some YouTube videos as private rather than remove them from publication. The DSSRC recommended that the videos be disabled in their entirety.

[ October 29, 2021 ] Chalk Couture: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Chalk Couture, a Utah-based MLM that sells do-it-yourself home decor products, uses atypical earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to earn a full-time income, make $2,000 per month in bonuses, and have unlimited earning potential. According to the DSSRC, the company removed several Facebook posts at issue. With respect to improper claims made by distributors who are no longer active, the DSSRC recommended that Chalk Couture make good faith efforts to contact the inactive distributors, as well as contact the platforms (i.e., social media platforms, websites) directly. Finally, with respect to a YouTube video that the company designated as private, the DSSRC recommended that the company disable the video entirely.

[ October 8, 2021 ] Lifebrook, LLC: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Lifebrook, a South Dakota-based MLM that sells juices and supplements, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to treat diabetes, arthritis, cataracts and erectile dysfunction, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to earn unlimited and long-term residual income. Though the company removed most of the claims at issue, the DSSRC recommended that Lifebrook heighten its efforts to remove the remaining problematic social media posts.

[ September 16, 2021 ] Root Wellness, LLC: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Root Wellness, a Tennessee-based MLM that sells health and wellness nutritional supplements, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to treat psoriasis, fibromyalgia and arthritis. Though the company removed some claims at issue and provided the DSSRC with publications it argued substantiated its health claims, the DSSRC concluded the evidence provided was not of sufficient reliability to support the problematic claims and determined that Root Wellness should take immediate action to disable the remaining posts at issue.

[ Sep. 3, 2021 ] It Works!: A class-action lawsuit was filed in California federal court against the Florida-based weight loss MLM It Works! alleging that the company is deceptively marketing its Thermofight pill as a safe and effective “thermogenic” fat burner and rapid weight loss solution when it does not work as advertised and is being illegally marketed as an unapproved new drug. The lawsuit also alleges that It Works! deceptively promotes its products using fake Amazon reviews and uses unfair auto-billing methods to charge consumers unauthorized membership fees.

[ August 18, 2021 ] Globallee, Inc.: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Globallee Inc., a Texas-based MLM that sells various health and wellness supplements, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to treat and protect against COVID-19, cancer and diabetes, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to get on the “fast track to success,” “discover unlimited potential!,” and live a luxurious lifestyle. The company, which has been the subject of previous DSSRC inquiries, removed some but not all of the problematic claims identified. The DSSRC recommended that Globallee take immediate action to remove the remaining claims, and stated that it would refer the matter to the appropriate governmental agencies should it fail to do so.

[ August 12, 2021 ] ByDzyne: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that ByDzyne, an MLM based in Thailand that sells a variety of products, including health and wellness, technology, beauty, and travel products, uses unsubstantiated earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to achieve financial freedom and make a significant income. The company did not respond to the DSSRC, resulting in a referral to the FTC.

[ August 6, 2021 ] Q Sciences: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Q Sciences, a Utah-based MLM that sells a line of health and wellness products, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to treat and protect against COVID-19, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to pay off debt, contribute to retirement and earn a full-time income. The company removed some but not all of the problematic claims identified, and did not substantively participate in the DSSRC’s inquiry. Accordingly, the DSSRC referred the matter to the FTC and the Utah Attorney General.

[ Aug. 2, 2021 ] WorldVentures: A group of former distributors sued the Texas-based MLM WorldVentures, which sells travel-related products, for allegedly operating an illegal pyramid scheme in which the company represented to the plaintiffs that they could make significant money by recruiting others to become WorldVentures “sales representatives” when, in reality, only three percent of distributors make any profit. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of WorldVentures, click here.

[ Aug. 2, 2021 ] Neora (aka Nerium International): A federal district court in Texas determined that the Federal Trade Commission cannot obtain monetary relief in the lawsuit it filed against Neora due to the Supreme Court’s decision in AMG Capital regarding the limits of Section 13(b) of the FTC Act, but that the agency’s lawsuit seeking injunctive relief can proceed. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Neora, click here.

[ July 27, 2021 ] Limbic Arc, LLC: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Limbic Arc, LLC, a Utah-based MLM that sells a wellness-related technology product, uses unsubstantiated earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to achieve financial freedom and earn a significant income, and unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about its product, including the ability to treat COVID-19 and fibromyalgia. The DSSRC recommended that the company remove such claims from publication. In response, Limbic Arc stated it is “fully committed to compliance with both the letter and the spirit of all laws and regulations protecting consumers.”

[ July 26, 2021 ] Max International, LLC: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Max International, LLC, a Utah-based MLM that sells a line of health-related and wellness products, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to treat and protect against asthma, cancer, and diabetes, among other medical conditions. The DSSRC recommended that the company remove such claims (which were made in social media posts published overseas) from publication, which, according to the DSSRC, the company is working on doing.

[ July 16, 2021 ] Mary Kay, Inc.: Following a TINA.org complaint, the DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Mary Kay, a Texas-based MLM that sells cosmetics and skincare products, and its distributors use deceptive, atypical and unsubstantiated income claims to market the Mary Kay business opportunity, including the ability to achieve financial freedom, earn a replacement income, buy a dream home and earn the iconic Mary Kay pink Cadillac. The DSSRC determined that Mary Kay had removed the vast majority of the claims identified by TINA.org. However, as of the date of the DSSRC’s case report, several deceptive income claims published by Mary Kay and its distributors remain in circulation.

[ July 15, 2021 ] Alliance in Motion Global, Inc.: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Alliance in Motion Global, Inc., an MLM based in the Philippines that distributes and markets food supplements manufactured by Nature’s Way USA, uses unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about products, including the ability to prevent COVID-19, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to become a millionaire and achieve financial freedom. The company failed to respond to the DSSRC resulting in the matter being referred to the FTC.

[ June 16, 2021 ] Blessings in No Time (BINT): The Federal Trade Commission and the state of Arkansas filed a joint complaint against BINT, a Texas-based “blessing loom” investment program company, and its two co-founders alleging that they operate an illegal pyramid scheme that targets African Americans and consumers who were struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the complaint, BINT falsely promised consumers investment returns as high as 800 percent when, in reality, the vast majority of participants have lost money. The FTC and state of Arkansas are seeking a permanent injunction, redress for injured consumers, and civil penalties under Arkansas state law.

[ June 14, 2021 ] Enagic USA: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Enagic USA, Inc., a California-based MLM that sells water purification products, was making unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about its products, including the ability to prevent eczema and psoriasis, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to make a substantial income and have a lavish lifestyle. The five claims identified by the DSSRC were removed by the company.

[ June 9, 2021 ] Zinzino: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Zinzino, LLC, a Swedish MLM (with a subsidiary in Florida) that sells supplements and skin care and weight loss products, was claiming its products could prevent COVID-19 and that its business opportunity could provide full-time self-employment and wealth. The DSSRC recommended that the company remove or significantly modify the two posts identified, only one of which had been removed by the time the DSSRC issued its decision.

[ June 3, 2021 ] Aihu: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Aihu, Inc., an Idaho-based MLM that sells essential oil skin care products, was making unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about its products, including the ability to treat respiratory problems, indigestion, arthritis, and fibromyalgia, among other medical conditions. The DSSRC recommended that the company remove the six posts identified, which the company agreed to do.

[ Apr. 14, 2021 ] Bulavita: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Bulavita (also known as Juuva and formerly known as Wakaya Perfection), an MLM that sells muscadine-based health products, was making unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims about its products, including the ability to prevent COVID-19, and inappropriate earnings claims about its business opportunity, including the ability to make a million dollars a month. The company failed to respond to the DSSRC resulting in the matter being referred to the FTC.

[ March 24, 2021 ] LuLaRoe: The California-based clothing MLM was hit with another class-action lawsuit alleging that it is a pyramid scheme. Specifically, the complaint claims that “LuLaRoe is an unlawful, fraudulent pyramid scheme which preys on stay-at-home mothers, promising them they can generate substantial income while still being able to spend time at home with their families.” The lawsuit seeks to represent all distributors in the U.S. from Jan. 1, 2013 until the present. For more on TINA.org’s coverage of LuLaRoe, click here.

[ Mar. 20, 2021 ] UWell Life, Inc.: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that UWell Life, Inc., a California-based MLM that sells wellness products, was making unsubstantiated disease-treatment claims, including the ability to protect against the coronavirus. The company failed to respond to the DSSRC resulting in the matter being referred to the FTC, which previously sent the company a warning letter in June 2020 for unlawfully advertising that certain products could prevent or treat COVID-19.

[ Mar. 8, 2021 ] ONEHOPE: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that ONEHOPE, a California-based MLM that sells wine and coffee, was making inappropriate income claims to promote the company’s business opportunity. The company removed some of the ad claims at issue and modified others. The DSSRC was still concerned that the company didn’t address one of the social media posts and recommended that the company make additional modifications to other claims.

[ Feb. 19, 2021 ] RBC Life Sciences, Inc.: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that RBC Life Sciences, a Texas-based MLM that sells nutritional and wellness products, was making inappropriate income claims to promote the company’s business opportunity and unsubstantiated health and efficacy claims to promote the company’s products. The company did not respond to the DSSRC, prompting the DSSRC to refer the matter to the FTC.

[ Feb. 1, 2021 ] LuLaRoe: A couple weeks before trial was scheduled to begin, the state of Washington’s pyramid case against the clothing MLM settled. LuLaRoe agreed to pay $4.75 million, most of which will be used to refund consumers in Washington who were recruited to the company. The consent decree also prohibits LuLaRoe from operating a pyramid scheme and requires the company to publish an income disclosure statement that tells recruits how much they might expect to earn as a distributor with the company. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of LuLaRoe, click here.

[ Jan. 22, 2021 ] Magnetude Jewelry: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision finding that Magnetude Jewelry, a Maryland-based MLM that sells bio-magnetic fashion jewelry, was making inappropriate income claims to promote the company’s business opportunity and unsubstantiated health and efficacy claims to promote the company’s products. While the company made some changes to its deceptive marketing statements, Magnetude Jewelry refused to comply with all of the DSSRC’s recommendations. The DSSRC decision made no mention of an FTC referral.

[ Jan. 20, 2021 ] Young Living: The Utah-based essential oils MLM is now facing a second class-action lawsuit in New York federal court alleging that the company is deceptively labeling and marketing its essential oils as therapeutic for a variety of health conditions in order to charge a premium price for the products. The first class action making similar allegations was filed on Dec. 3, 2020, in Minnesota federal court. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Young Living, click here.

[ Jan. 20, 2021 ] Primerica: The DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision based on a TINA.org complaint finding that Primerica, a Georgia-based MLM (and Direct Selling Association member) that sells term life insurance and various other financial service products, and its distributors were making inappropriate income claims to promote the company’s business opportunity. The DSSRC determined that the company had removed many of the claims identified by TINA.org from publication and that it should include a disclosure of the income that can be generally expected by the typical distributor if the depicted distributor references financial success that is attributable to the company’s business opportunity. The DSSRC did not address the inadequacy of Primerica’s current income disclosure. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Primerica, click here.

[ Jan. 7, 2021 ] Gano Excel USA, Inc.: Gano, a California-based MLM that sells drinks and personal care products, was on the receiving end of a DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) inquiry, which found “egregious unsupported earnings claims” and “aggressive and unsupported health-related claims,” with several examples directly referencing the COVID-19 pandemic. Because Gano only managed to take down 5 of 17 identified inappropriate claims, the DSSRC said it would continue to monitor the company’s actions and initiate a compliance inquiry if necessary.

[ Dec. 21, 2020 ] WorldVentures: The Texas-based MLM, which sells travel-related products, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Debtors include Spherature Investments LLC, Rovia, LLC, WorldVentures Marketing Holdings, LLC, WorldVentures Marketplace, LLC, WorldVentures Marketing, LLC and WorldVentures Services, LLC. Bankruptcy documents indicate that assets and liabilities are estimated between $50 and $100 million, and that there are more than 100 creditors. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of WorldVentures, click here.

[ Dec. 3, 2020 ] Young Living: On the heels of the National Advertising Review Board finding that the Utah-based essential oils MLM company did not have the requisite scientific support to claim that its oils are “therapeutic grade,” the company has been hit with a class-action lawsuit in Minnesota federal court. The lawsuit claims that the MLM is deceptively labeling and marketing its essential oils as therapeutic for a variety of ailments in order to charge a premium price for its products. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Young Living, click here.

[ Sept. 9, 2020 ] International Markets Live (aka IML and IM Mastery Academy): DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision based on a TINA.org complaint finding that IML and its distributors were making inappropriate income claims to promote the company’s business opportunity. DSSRC recommended that the company “engage in effective training and monitoring of its IBOs (distributors) and use appropriate enforcement procedures to provide reasonable assurance that earnings claims made by its IBOs are substantiated, contain appropriate disclosures and are not misleading.” For more of TINA.org’s coverage of IML, click here.

[ Aug. 31, 2020 ] Le-Vel Brands: DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council) closed an investigation and issued a case decision based on a TINA.org complaint finding that Le-Vel and its distributors were making inappropriate health claims about the Thrive product line and atypical income claims about the company’s business opportunity. The decision concluded by stating that “DSSRC will continue to monitor the messages disseminated by the Company’s promoters … and will take prompt and necessary steps … should it identify an ongoing proliferation of unsupported product or income claims ….” For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Le-Vel, click here.

[ Aug. 31, 2020 ] Neora (aka Nerium International): Neora’s lawsuit against the FTC, in which the company argued that the commission was attempting to improperly change direct selling laws, was dismissed on Monday. The court found that Neora’s claims were not ripe for adjudication and that it could properly defend itself against allegations that it is a pyramid scheme in the agency’s enforcement action currently pending in Texas federal court. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Neora, click here.

[ Aug. 28, 2020 ] LuLaRoe: In the state of Washington’s pyramid case against the clothing MLM, the court denied the company’s (and other defendants’) motion for summary judgment on Friday. It also refused to seal or redact exhibits used in support of the state’s opposition to summary judgment. Trial is scheduled to begin on Feb. 16, 2021.

[ Aug. 28, 2020 ] Herbalife: On Friday, the Department of Justice reported that Herbalife had agreed to pay penalties of more than $122 million and admitted that it “knowingly and willfully conspired with others in a scheme to falsify its books and records and provide corrupt payments and benefits to Chinese government officials” in order to obtain, retain and increase its business in China.

[ Aug. 17, 2020 ] Monat Global: Monat entered into an Assurance of Voluntary Compliance (AVC) with the state of Florida on Friday. Pursuant to the AVC, Monat must refund consumers more than $80,000 and pay Florida $250,000. The company is also enjoined from engaging in deceptive marketing, making unauthorized charges on consumers’ bank accounts, making it impossible for consumers to cancel orders, and refusing to provide appropriate refunds, among other things. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Monat Global, click here.

[ Aug. 5, 2020 ] LuLaRoe: Things are starting to heat up in Washington state’s pyramid scheme case against LuLaRoe, which was originally filed in January 2019. LuLaRoe’s motion for summary judgment is now fully briefed, but the company is fighting to keep about 20 exhibits in support of Washington’s opposition to the summary judgment motion from public view. Among the exhibits currently available for viewing are seven declarations from former LuLaRoe distributors, which contain interesting details about their experiences with the company, such as the fact that six of the distributors went into debt to start their LuLaRoe businesses. For more on TINA.org’s coverage of LuLaRoe, click here.

[ July 29, 2020 ] Herbalife: An appellate court has upheld a district court decision in a class action RICO case against Herbalife and dozens of its top distributors denying distributors’ motion to compel arbitration. The Eleventh Circuit ruled that “[b]ecause none of the top distributors is a party to any of the aggrieved distributors’ agreements, they cannot invoke the agreements’ arbitration clauses.” For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Herbalife, click here.

[ July 27, 2020 ] Neora (aka Nerium International): The FTC scored a small victory in its pyramid scheme lawsuit against Neora on Monday when a New Jersey federal court, in denying Neora’s motion to dismiss the case, held that an earlier lawsuit instituted by Neora against the FTC in Illinois was “filed in bad faith” and raised “improper forum selection concerns.” The court did, however, transfer the FTC’s action to Texas, where Neora is headquartered. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Neora, click here.

[ July 22, 2020 ] Young Living: SC Johnson & Son challenged a multitude of health and wellness claims being made by Young Living to market its essential oils before the National Advertising Division (NAD). On Wednesday, the self-regulatory body recommended that Young Living discontinue “unsupported, health-related essential oil product claims of ‘therapeutic grade’ and physical and/or mental health benefits, as these claims are unsupported.” Young Living is appealing NAD’s decision to the National Advertising Review Board. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of Young Living, click here.

[ July 9, 2020 ] DSSRC (Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council): The DSSRC published Guidance on Earnings Claims for the Direct Selling Industry, which it states provides detail on how it reviews and evaluates earnings claims in the MLM industry. The guidance cautions against using phrases such as “financial freedom,” “full-time income,” “replacement income,” “residual income” and “career-level income,” among other things.

[ July 2020 ] DSA (Direct Selling Association): The DSA published its 2019 industry overview. Comparing the data to the associations’ 2018 overview reveal, among other things, that direct retail sales in the U.S. decreased from $35.4 billion in 2018 to $35.2 billion in 2019 while the number of distributors increased from 6.2 million in 2018 to 6.8 million in 2019. For more of TINA.org’s coverage of DSA fact sheets, click here.

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Multi-Level Marketing – a way of distributing products or services in which the distributors earn income from their own retail sales and from retail sales made by their direct and indirect recruits.

Multi-Level Marketing – a way of distributing products or services in which the distributors earn income from their own retail sales and from retail sales made by their direct and indirect recruits.

Multi-Level Marketing – a way of distributing products or services in which the distributors earn income from their own retail sales and from retail sales made by their direct and indirect recruits.

Multi-Level Marketing – a way of distributing products or services in which the distributors earn income from their own retail sales and from retail sales made by their direct and indirect recruits.

Multi-Level Marketing – a way of distributing products or services in which the distributors earn income from their own retail sales and from retail sales made by their direct and indirect recruits.

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