Thursday, January 12, 2017

With New Law Shielding Negative Reviews, It's Time to Update Terms of Use; Inside Counsel, 1/12/17

Jennifer Williams-Alvarez, Inside Counsel; 

With New Law Shielding Negative Reviews, It's Time to Update Terms of Use

"The Consumer Review Fairness Act of 2016, signed into law by President Barack Obama on Dec. 14, voids provisions in form contracts that aim to prohibit or restrict a consumer's ability to leave a negative review. While a number of exceptions are included to allow businesses to take action for such things as defamatory or vulgar reviews, the CRFA makes it unlawful to include so-called gag clauses in contracts with consumers and authorizes the Federal Trade Commission, and in some cases, state attorneys general, to bring enforcement actions.

The law makes it unlawful to offer contracts with these clauses 90 days after enactment, in mid-March, and the enforcement provisions are effective one year after enactment, in December.
The law was enacted in response to a number of news stories about businesses going to battle with customers over bad reviews."

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