Schakowsky, Cárdenas Legislation in Response to Supreme Court Decision on FTC Act Section 13(b) Passes House

July 20, 2021
Press Release
The Consumer Protection and Recovery Act will restore FTC’s authority to return money to defrauded consumers.

WASHINGTON, DC — Today, the House passed legislation by Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL-09), Chair of the Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee, and Congressman Tony Cárdenas (CA-29),  Vice-Chair of the Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee, to restore the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) 13(b) consumer protection powers to return money to defrauded consumers. In April, the Supreme Court took away a major tool from the FTC's ability to protect consumers from fraudsters and scammers. 

“The passage of the Consumer Protection and Recovery Act today restores the FTC’s ability to ensure that money can be put back in the pockets of defrauded consumers and that bad actors cannot keep illegally obtained profits,” said Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Chair Schakowsky. “Over $3 billion for consumers is at stake in pending cases brought by the Federal Trade Commission. I’d like to thank my good friend and colleague Vice Chair Cárdenas for his leadership on this legislation.  I urge my colleagues in the Senate to take up this bill quickly to ensure the FTC can fulfill its critical consumer protection mission and make defrauded consumers whole.”

“Every day, Americans – many seniors, veterans, parents – are being ripped off and cheated out of the little money they have to get by,” said Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Vice Chair Cárdenas. “Today the House passed my legislation to restore the tool that has served as a saving grace for millions of defrauded consumers for over 40 years. I thank my colleagues in the House for voting to protect consumers and get money back into the pockets of hardworking Americans.  I’m especially grateful to Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone and Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Chairwoman Schakowsky for their leadership. I look forward to my colleagues in the Senate taking action on my legislation and sending the clear message that Congress is fighting to help families when they need it most.” 

“The House took decisive action today to restore the FTC’s authority to help return money to consumers and businesses that have been defrauded by scammers,” said Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. “Congressman Cárdenas’ legislation was necessary after a Supreme Court ruling in April undermined the agency’s authority that has protected consumers for more than 40 years. I commend him for his leadership on this critical consumer protection bill and look forward to continuing to work together to get it passed in the Senate and signed into law.”

The Consumer Protection and Recovery Act, H.R. 2668, which passed the House with bipartisan support, amends Section 13(b) of the FTC Act to make explicit the FTC’s longstanding authority to obtain injunctive and equitable relief, including monetary redress for consumers in court for all violations of the laws it enforces. The bill also makes explicit that the FTC may pursue many kinds of equitable relief, including restitution for losses, contract reformation and recission, monetary refunds and the refund of property, as well as forcing bad actors to return their ill-gotten gains.  

The legislation is supported by the Biden Administration and Attorneys General for 28 States: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.   

A full list of supporting organizations can be found here. More information on the bill can be found here

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