Seventh Circuit Strikes a Blow Against the FTC’s Preferred Enforcement Power

28 August 2019
View Debevoise In Depth
Key takeaways:
  • The Seventh Circuit recently held that the FTC does not have legal authority to obtain restitution in cases brought directly in federal court.
  • As a result of this ruling, the FTC in competition cases has lost its ability to seek restitution in the Seventh Circuit. In consumer protection cases brought in the Seventh Circuit, the FTC can still pursue restitution pursuant to a lengthy and cumbersome process that first requires an administrative ruling prior to bringing a subsequent follow-on action in federal court.
  • This decision upsets decades of practice regarding a cornerstone of the FTC’s consumer protection and competition efforts and will have immediate, far-reaching ramifications.