The US Federal Trade Commission voted unanimously to resolve the issue of illegal maintenance restrictions.In the policy statement Released on Wednesday, The agency said it plans to invest more resources to enforce existing laws, such as Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, To protect small businesses and consumers from companies that will prevent them from repairing the products they buy. In the process, the FTC will adopt a five-part approach to address this issue, including collecting public opinions and complaints, and working more closely with state law enforcement agencies and policymakers to update existing regulations.
“These types of restrictions can significantly increase costs for consumers, stifle innovation, close business opportunities for independent repair shops, cause unnecessary e-waste, delay timely repairs, and weaken flexibility,” Recently confirmed FTC Chairman Lina Khan said. “The Federal Trade Commission has a series of tools that can be used to eradicate illegal repair restrictions, and today’s policy statement will make us pledge to advance this issue with renewed vigor.”
The policy statement follows Executive Order of July 9 Among them, President Biden instructed the FTC to resolve “unfair anti-competitive restrictions on third-party repair or self-repair items” imposed by “powerful manufacturers” in the agriculture and technology industries. In Wednesday’s announcement, the FTC did not name any specific companies that will be part of any enforcement action. However, companies like Apple are likely to be the agency’s primary consideration.This tech giant has always Lobbying against state maintenance rights legislation, Claiming that these laws will Put consumers at risk.
The maintenance rights advocates quickly appreciated the announcement. “FTC has set the tone for American business. For a long time, manufacturers have been bullying consumers and forcing local repair shops to close,” iFixit CEO Kyle Wiens (Kyle Wiens) said in a statement. Blog post The company will release it after the policy announcement. “This landmark new policy changes that. There is a new sheriff in town.”
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