The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on September 15 approved a series of resolutions that will "enable the agency staff to efficiently and expeditiously investigate conduct in core FTC priority areas over the next ten years," a statement issued by the Commission said. "Companies engaging in conduct implicated by these resolutions should be forewarned: the FTC looks forward to aggressively using these resolutions and will not hesitate to take action against illegal conduct to the fullest extent possible under the law," said Holly Vedova, Acting Director of the Bureau of Competition. How do these resolutions help streamline investigations? The eight new compulsory process resolutions passed by the FTC allow its staff to use compulsory process and issue civil investigative demands and subpoenas when carrying out investigations. Compulsory process refers to the issuance of demands for documents and testimony, through the use of civil investigative demands and subpoenas. The FTC Act authorizes the Commission to use compulsory process in its investigations. Compulsory process requires the recipient to produce information, and these orders are enforceable by courts. — FTC statement Previously, the Commission was only authorised to issue a subpoena or make a demand for information after it was signed by a Commissioner acting pursuant to a Commission resolution. Do these resolutions reduce Commission oversight? Three of the five FTC Commissioners (Chair Lina Khan and Commissioners Rohit Chopra and Rebecca Kelly Slaughter) voted to approve the resolutions, while two of them, Commissioners Noah Joshua Phillips and Christine S. Wilson dissented saying that the resolutions removes the…
FTC approves resolutions that allow it to expedite investigations in key antitrust areas
While the changes were approved to streamline investigations, some believed that it could also reduce the agency’s oversight.
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