Making a bad situation worse, a rude awakening for companies with advertising injury coverage, and more in this issue of Advertising Law News & Analysis

3 min


The Cover-Up Is Often Worse Than the Crime

Finding out you or your company is the subject of a government investigation can be terrifying. In a recent blog post, Venable partner Len Gordon writes that while the urge to destroy or hide potentially incriminating evidence is understandable, don't do it. Legal history is replete with stories of persons or companies turning a manageable legal problem into a more serious one by trying to hide or destroy evidence. He singles out a recent incident involving a bus company executive as a good case study in what not to do when facing a government investigation and the consequences of trying to hide or destroy evidence in an investigation.

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cash payment

Advertising Injury Coverage Can Leave You on the Hook

Many businesses acquire commercial liability insurance coverage to protect against "advertising injury" resulting from their marketing practices. But while the term "advertising injury" may sound comprehensive on its face, Venable attorneys Randy Miller and Kevin Weigand write in the March edition of Response Magazine that its definition in the insurance policy may be much narrower than you think. Because of this, several businesses have received a rude awakening after first learning they are being sued for false advertising, and then learning their insurance company will not pay to defend the lawsuit.

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finance law

FTC Remains on Consumer Finance Enforcement Beat

With all eyes on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and its future fate, it's easy to overlook the Federal Trade Commission's recent activities in the consumer finance world, writes Venable attorney Alexandra Megaris in a recent blog post. The FTC, led by the Division of Financial Practices, continues to share enforcement jurisdiction with the CFPB over many industries touching consumer finance. And, as an independent agency with a bipartisan commission, the FTC is more insulated from the political trade winds that executive agencies confront. Contrast that with the CFPB, which, although an independent agency, is young and born of the hyper-partisanship that defines Washington today. If the CFPB's authority is significantly curtailed, Megaris writes, we can expect the FTC to step up to partially fill the void.

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online fundraising

FTC Give & Take: Consumers, Contributions, and Charity

Last week, the FTC and the National Association of State Charity Officials (NASCO) hosted "Give & Take: Consumers, Contributions, and Charity," a conference exploring consumer protection issues in the changing landscape of charitable giving, write Venable attorneys Eric Berman, Atitaya Rok, and Cristina Vessels in a recent blog post. They write that two key takeaways emerged: first, law enforcement against perceived charitable solicitation fraud using traditional telemarketing and direct mail methods remains top of mind for the FTC and state attorneys general. Second, regulators acknowledge the emergence of newer forms of charitable solicitation, such as Internet appeals, social media campaigns, and crowdfunding. Users of these newer platforms are less formally regulated right now, but the gap between regulation of traditional fundraising and newer methods of fundraising appears to be closing.

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The Fordham Fashion Law Institute Annual Symposium

March 31, 2017 | New York, NY

From smart mirrors to connected dressing rooms, the tech revolution that initially allowed us to shop anywhere, anytime is now changing the in-store retail environment. Join Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney and other fashion industry thought leaders in discussing the revolutionary changes facing the fashion world at the 7th Annual Fashion Law Institute Symposium. Hear from Venable's Po Yi on a panel titled "Mercenary Matters: Technology and the changing world of retail."


Response Expo

April 25-27, 2017 | San Diego, CA

Response Expo, the event for performance-based marketers, is the industry authority on actionable, trackable, and measurable marketing. Join Venable at this year's event in San Diego to network with marketing leaders, executives, and suppliers; learn about new advances in the industry; and connect with peers.