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Skechers settles with FTC over misleading ads

Skechers ad

Skechers ads claimed the shoes would improve fitness and appearance. (Source: FTC.gov)

Federal Trade Commission
The Federal Trade Commission announced May 16, 2012, that Skechers USA, Inc. has agreed to pay $40 million to settle charges that the company deceived consumers by making unfounded claims that Shape-ups would help people lose weight, and strengthen and tone their buttocks, legs and abdominal muscles.

Did you buy Skechers Toning Shoes? You may be eligible for a refund. Go to www.ftc.gov/skechers.

The settlement with the Manhattan Beach, California-based Skechers is part of the FTC’s ongoing effort to stop overhyped advertising claims, and follows a similar settlement with Reebok International Ltd. last year.

The FTC alleged that besides Shape-ups, Skechers also made deceptive claims about its Resistance Runner, Toners, and Tone-ups shoes. Consumers who bought these “toning” shoes will be eligible for refunds either directly from the FTC or through a court-approved class action lawsuit, and can submit a claim here. The settlement with the FTC is part of a broader agreement, also being announced today resolving a multi-state investigation, which was led by the Tennessee and Ohio Attorneys General Offices and included attorneys general from 42 other states and the District of Columbia.

“Skechers’ unfounded claims went beyond stronger and more toned muscles. The company even made claims about weight loss and cardiovascular health,” said David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The FTC’s message, for Skechers and other national advertisers, is to shape up your substantiation or tone down your claims.”

RELATED LINKS

May 16, 2012, “Skechers Will Pay $40 Million to Settle FTC Charges That It Deceived Consumers with Ads for ‘Toning Shoes’”

Oct. 28, 2012, “FTC orders refunds for those who bought ‘muscle-toning’ shoes” – Reebok settlement

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- who has written 499 posts on Health and Fitness.

David Boraks is the founder and editor of Davidson News LLC, which started in 2006 as a neighborhood blog and evolved into a regional community news network. He is a print, magazine, web and radio journalist, with experience in every nook and cranny of the news world, covering everything from local news to Fortune 100 companies to technology to Asia. He lives on South Street in Davidson, in a house that was at the center of a 1914 murder case. Ask him and he'll tell you that story.

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