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FTC Formally Adopts Right to Repair Platform

An anonymous reader quotes a Motherboard report: The Federal Trade Commission voted unanimously on Wednesday pursue policies that will make it easier for people to fix their own things. In a 5-0 vote at a committee meeting, the FTC agreed to adopt a policy document describing how he planned to enforce rules that prevent manufacturers from restricting aftermarket repair. It plans to enforce existing warranty law, coordinate with national and local lawmakers to ensure open markets, and investigate current remedies monopolies for antitrust violations. The move comes just weeks after President Joe Biden signed a decree directing the commission to create rules on the right to reparation.

The FTC policy document described a five-pronged approach to the problem. First, it solicits comments and complaints from the public about the bad experiences it has had with repair issues and warranty violation. It has long been illegal under federal law for businesses to void warranties based on aftermarket repairs. The problem is that these laws are often not enforced, although the FTC has taken action against manufacturers who affixed removal warranty stickers on their devices after the motherboard reported the problem there. several years ago. “Although the current law does not provide for civil penalties or remedies, the Commission will consider bringing charges against violators of the Magnuson-Moss warranty law to seek an appropriate injunction,” the policy document said.

Next, the FTC said it would review current remedy restrictions for violations of existing antitrust and anti-competitive laws. “Finally, the Commission will bring an interdisciplinary approach to this issue, using the resources and expertise of the entire agency to tackle illegal repair restrictions,” the guidance document said. “The FTC will also coordinate closely with law enforcement and state policymakers to ensure compliance and update existing laws and regulations to advance the goal of opening up repair markets. . ” “Manufacturers, be forewarned: it’s time to clean up and let people fix their things,” Nathan Proctor, senior director of the US PIRG Right to Repair campaign, told Motherboard in an email. “With the unanimous support of the commissioners, there is a new sheriff in town. The FTC is ready to act to end many schemes used to undermine reparations, as support grows for new legislation to crack down. “

FTC Formally Adopts Right to Repair Platform

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