FTC Takes Action Against R360 for Misleading Individuals Seeking Addiction Treatment

A press release issued on Tuesday by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) detailed action that the commission had taken against R360 LLC (R360) and its owner. The FTC alleged that the defendants had misled individuals who were seeking treatment for addiction by claiming that they would be matched with a recovery facility tailored to their needs and selected by educated professionals.

This is the first case brought under the Opioid Addiction Recovery Fraud Prevention Act, which was passed in 2018. The act allows the FTC to impose civil penalties on those who engage in “unfair or deceptive acts or practices with respect to any substance use disorder treatment service or product.” Substance use disorder treatment services are defined within the parameters of the act as those who provide treatment, those who give treatment referrals, or those who provide recovery housing.

The complaint alleged that R360 represented through its television advertisements that callers who needed help would be referred to the defendant’s nationwide network of addiction treatment and recovery specialists, who would meet their individual needs. The facility a consumer was matched with was supposedly selected through “a rigorous evaluation process conducted by an expert in substance use disorders and addiction treatment.” The FTC explains that in reality, R360’s owner was responsible for these decisions and had no formal training that aligned with addiction treatment.

The Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Samuel Levine, explained that the order “stops R360 and its owner from deceiving people about addiction treatment. We’ll continue to use the authority Congress gave us to go after companies that prey on those suffering from addictions.”

The $3.8 million civil penalty will be accompanied by an order requiring the defendants from engaging in further misrepresentations regarding treatment for addiction.