NAD Enforcement


Counsel in NAD Review and Arbitration Cases

The National Advertising Division (NAD) of the Better Business Bureau has offered alternative dispute resolution since the 1970s for manufacturers, distributors, marketers and consumers with complaints regarding product claims and advertising practices. Since 2006, the NAD has also had a dedicated program targeting advertising claims made by dietary supplement manufacturers and marketers.

If your food or dietary supplement company needs advice about the NAD review process, either as a way of challenging a competitor’s practices or to respond to a complaint brought against your own company, contact Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman to work with a lawyer familiar with NAD procedures.


Understanding the NAD Review Process

The issues addressed in an NAD review case are similar to those covered in FTC enforcement proceedings in that they primarily concern the truthfulness of product claims and the advertiser’s ability to substantiate them. While the NAD has no enforcement authority, its reputation and capacity to publish its decisions can expose overstated product claims to devastating effects in the market.


One advantage of the NAD procedure is its speed. Its policy is to issue a decision within 60 days of a complaint. Relying on attorneys experienced in advertising law, investigative techniques and arbitration procedures, the NAD generally develops its record, conducts its hearing and issues its decision with the cooperation of both parties. The result of an NAD review is typically a decision to either uphold or dismiss a claim of deceptive advertising practices.

The NAD might also issue fairly nuanced decisions, such as one finding that product claims are adequately substantiated but that consumer testimonials must be modified. Our law firm’s experience with NAD procedures and the range of possible outcomes can give you an advantage in working through the review process.


Ignoring the NAD Can Invite FTC or FDA Enforcement

It is not a good idea to ignore a competitor’s NAD complaint. Lack of cooperation on the part of an advertiser engaged in nationwide marketing will very often result in the NAD’s referral of the matter to the FTC or FDA.

The efficient and prompt client service characterizing the work at Ullman, Shapiro & Ullman makes our law firm especially well suited to the fast pace of an NAD review. Contact us for advice about the best ways to respond to an NAD challenge or to initiate the review process against an offending competitor.