The Federal Trade Commission announced amendments, on July 8, 2014, to its Used Auto Parts Guides, intended to prevent unfair or deceptive marketing of used motor vehicle parts and assemblies containing used parts. The FTC’s amended Guides will become effective on August 22, 2014, and complement disclosure requirements in place in at least some states.
In light of FTC’s authority to investigate and challenge — under Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act, 15 U.S.C. 45 — conduct it finds unfair or deceptive, it is important for parties engaged in the “manufacture, sale, distribution, marketing and advertising (including advertising in electronic format, such as the Internet) of parts that are not new, and assemblies containing such parts,” to understand the disclosure requirements of the Guides.
FTC first promulgated rules regarding used auto parts in December 1962. FTC’s Used Auto Parts Guides, issued in 1979, deem certain practices to be unfair or deceptive including, among other practices:
In connection with FTC’s recent review of its Used Auto Parts Guides, FTC sought public comments in 2012 as to whether these Guides were still necessary, whether changes were required, and what effects changes in technology and economic conditions might have had on the requirements of the guides. Following its review of these public comments, the FTC voted this week to retain and revise the Guides.
Among the recent changes and additions to the Guides adopted by the FTC are:
While these changes and additions are not momentous, the fact the FTC decided to maintain the Guides demonstrates FTC’s view that the Guides remain a necessary tool to address unfair or deceptive marketing of used motor vehicle parts and assemblies containing used parts.