Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs and 48 other states, today announced a $71 million nationwide settlement with Amgen Inc. to resolve allegations that the company violated state consumer protection laws. Amgen Inc. is a California based biotechnology company that manufactures and sells pharmaceutical products, including Aranesp and Enbrel.
Today's settlement resolves allegations that Amgen unlawfully promoted both medications. The Complaint and Agreed Final Judgment alleges that Amgen violated the law by: (1) promoting Aranesp for dosing frequencies longer than the FDA approved label without competent and reliable scientific evidence to substantiate the extended dosing frequencies; (2) promoting Aranesp for anemia caused by cancer without having FDA approval or competent and reliable scientific evidence to support it; and (3) promoting Enbrel for mild plaque psoriasis even though Enbrel is only approved by the FDA to treat chronic moderate to severe plaque psoriasis...read the Amgen release.
Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and Bill Giannini, acting Director of the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs, along with 46 other states and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, announced a $136 million nationwide settlement with Chase Bank USA N.A. and Chase Bankcard Services Inc.
The agreement requires Chase to significantly reform its credit card debt collection practices and cease collections on more than a half million people nationwide. Among other reforms, the agreement requires new safeguards to help ensure debt information is accurate, provides additional information to consumers who owe debts, and bars Chase's debt buyers from reselling consumer debts to other purchasers...read the Chase release.
Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced today the merger of two large national chains of deep discount stores, Dollar Tree, headquartered in Chesapeake, Virginia and Family Dollar, headquartered in Matthews, North Carolina. As part of the agreement, Dollar Tree will be required to divest hundreds of Family Dollar stores nationwide, including stores in Memphis and Nashville.
Working with the Federal Trade Commission, Tennessee and 16 other State Attorneys General are requiring Dollar Tree to sell more than 300 Family Dollar stores to a new competitor in order to complete the $9.2 billion acquisition. The affected stores will be sold to Sycamore Partners to be re-branded as DollarExpress, a new chain of deep discount stores...read the Dollar Tree release.
Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced today that the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has issued an order temporarily blocking the merger of Sysco and US Foods. The court order states that a preliminary injunction is in the public interest as there "is a reasonable probability that the proposed merger will substantially impair competition."
Tennessee, along with ten other states, joined the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in seeking a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to prevent the proposed merger between the nation's two largest food distributors until the FTC completes an administrative hearing. The hearing, scheduled to begin July 21, 2015, will determine whether the proposed combination would violate the antitrust laws...read the Sysco, US Foods release.
Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and Bill Giannini, Acting Director of the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs today announced a settlement with RadioShack over the sale of its customers' personally identifiable information. Tennessee played a leading role in a thirty-eight state coalition to oppose the sale of consumer data.
The settlement will limit information RadioShack can share with new owner General Wireless. General Wireless will only use the information they obtain from RadioShack in the continued operation of the RadioShack brand...read the Radio Shack release.
Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III, along with attorneys general from 30 other states, today announced a settlement with three national credit reporting agencies — Equifax Information Services LLC, Experian Information Solutions Inc., and TransUnion LLC.
The settlement requires the credit reporting agencies to pay the participating states $6 million and to make a number of changes to their business practices. Tennessee will receive $157,000 for its participation in the investigation...read the credit reporting agencies release.
Consumers harmed by mobile cramming practices now eligible for refunds
Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III and Bill Giannini, acting Director of the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs today announced settlements with Sprint Corporation ("Sprint") and Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless ("Verizon") that include $158 million in payments. The settlement with the state of Tennessee, the other 49 states, and the District of Columbia resolves allegations that Sprint and Verizon placed charges for third-party services on consumers' mobile telephone bills that were not authorized by the consumers, a practice known as "mobile cramming."
Cramming on mobile phone bills typically involves a $9.99 per month fee for "premium" text message subscription services (also known as "PSMS" subscriptions) such as horoscopes, trivia, and sports scores that the consumers have never heard of or requested. ...read the Sprint, Verizon release.
Company allegedly used deceptive business practices to target military families
Middle Tennessee auto dealer, Wholesale Inc., has agreed to immediately change its advertising practices and pay the State of Tennessee $50,000, Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced today.
A Davidson County Court approved the settlement between Wholesale, Inc., the Tennessee Attorney General's Office, and the Tennessee Division of Consumer Affairs. The agreement centers around two advertising mailers sent to would be customers. One of the mailers specifically targeted service members living near Fort Campbell...read the Wholesale, Inc. release.