If you lost money trying to sell Herbalife’s weight-loss shakes, bars and other products, you may be one of about 350,000 people who will be getting a check in the mail.
The checks will mostly be between about $100 and $500 for each “distributor,” but federal regulators said the greatest amount could be more than $9,000.
The checks are being funded by a $200 million settlement that the Los Angeles-based Herbalife agreed to pay after the Federal Trade Commission alleged the controversial company misled potential “distributors” into believing they could gain riches through the company’s plan.
But according to the FTC, few people made much, or any, money.
Herbalife said in the July settlement that it rejected the FTC conclusions about its business activities, but it was agreeing to pay the money to avoid “the financial cost and distraction of protracted litigation.”
Individual refunds that started being mailed Tuesday may not cover all the losses, as recipients paid at least $1,000 each and received little or nothing in return, according to the FTC.
Former distributors should receive their checks by Jan. 20, but FTC regulators said anyone with questions or concerns about checks not received may call the agency at (844) 322-8146.
Under the settlement, Herbalife agreed to discontinue it promises of wealth in promotions and show that at least 80 percent of its sales are from real customers buying products and not from distributors signing up to make supposed sales.
Federal regulators warned consumers to be wary of “multilevel marketing programs.”