Starting April 30, the Federal Trade Commission will start mailing out 140,000 refund checks totaling about $6 million to buyers of dietary supplements that were falsely marketed as helping women lose substantial weight while eating fatty and high-carb foods.
The weight-loss pills were sold under the “For Women Only” brand by television’s home shopping channel, QVC.
The average amount being refunded is $40.
Last year, QVC settled with the FTC on charges it violated an order from the federal agency by falsely claiming that consumers would lose weight and be able to eat foods high in fight and carbohydrates without gaining body fat.
QVC aired about 200 programs selling the pills, and other weight-loss products, including Lite Bites weight-loss food bars and shakes; and Bee-Alive Royal Jelly energy supplements.
“These are legitimate checks, and the FTC urges consumers to cash them,” the agency said in a statement today. “The FTC never requires consumers to pay money up-front or provide additional information before they cash redress checks issued to them.”
The March 2009 settlement also requires QVC to pay a $1.5 million civil penalty.
For more information about the case: http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/03/infomercials.shtm