Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) – the federal agency protecting American consumers – closed on December 28, 2018, due to a lapse in funding caused by the partial shutdown of the United States federal government that began on December 22, 2018, according to a notice on the FTC website.
FTC Closed Due To Government Shutdown
The FTC website and social media properties will not be updated until the government reopens and all FTC events are postponed until future notice. Some online services will be available while others are not. The status of FTC online services is listed below and also listed at www.ftc.gov/ftc-is-closed.
The following FTC services WILL NOT be available during the shutdown:
- National Do Not Call Registry (For consumers).
- National Do Not Call Registry (For telemarketers).
- Consumer Sentinel Network (For law enforcement).
- Complaint Assistant (For filing consumer complaints).
- Identitytheft.gov (For consumers reporting ID theft).
- Econsumer.gov (For consumers reporting international complaints)
The following FTC services WILL be available during the shutdown under these conditions:
- Premerger: The Premerger Notification Office (PNO) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) Premerger Office will be OPEN during regular hours to receive HSR filings. The PNO will operate with a limited staff so will NOT answer email or telephone inquiries regarding HSR rules or filing procedures. Early Termination of waiting periods will NOT be granted during the shutdown.
- Public Comment: Public comments can be submitted, using the appropriate web form, through ftc.gov or www.regulations.gov but the FTC will take no action on these comments until the government reopens.
- E-Filing: Individuals can submit documents to be filed, but the FTC will take no action until the government reopens.
- Freedom of Information Act (FOIA): FOIA requests may be filed, but they will not be processed until the government reopens.
- Registered Identification Number (RN) Database: The RN Database will be available but staff ar3e not available to respond to queries.
A federal government shutdown in the United States occurs when Congress and the President fail to pass appropriations legislation funding government operations and agencies. Since 1976, there have been government shutdowns in 1980, 1981, 1984, 1986, 1990, 1995–1996, 2013, and 2018-2019.
Along with protecting American consumers by preventing unfair and deceptive business practices, the FTC helps to enforce the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) that governs background checks for employment purposes in the United States. To learn more about the FTC, visit www.ftc.gov.
The FTC also helps enforce the Privacy Shield Framework that protects data of European Union (EU) citizens. In September 2018, the FTC announced four companies agreed to settle allegations they falsely claimed certification under the Privacy Shield. Companies settled similar FTC charges in July 2018 and September 2017.
ESR Was One of First Adopters of Privacy Shield Framework
Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global background check firm – was one of the first adopters of the Privacy Shield Framework with an original certification date of August 12, 2016, less than two weeks after Privacy Shield officially launched on August 1, 2016. For more information, visit www.esrcheck.com.
NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.
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