Lifestyle Lift changes national ads after probe
June 20, 2013
Updated June 25, 2013. A recent USA Today article reported on a settlement in Florida that has national repercussions for cosmetic surgery company, Lifestyle Lift. The company promises cheaper, less invasive facelift procedures and has agreed to stop using the term "revolutionary procedure" in their advertising.
Rebecca Shaw, a spokesperson for Lifestyle Lift, says the company will no longer "call it a revolutionary procedure" and will instead say that their facelift is a "new approach to a well-established procedure."
One patient, Joyce Wooten, filed a complaint with Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi's office and believed that Lifestyle Lift was "a painless procedure with a quick recovery" from their advertising. Instead, she told USA Today that her first procedure "ruined [her] life" and only received revision surgery at no cost after threatening a lawsuit.
Along with the wording in their advertising, Lifestyle Lift also must indicate if their models are paid and what facial rejuvenation procedures they have received.
Lifestyle Lift has agreed to make a $25,000 donation to Seniors v. Crime and reimburse the Florida Office of Attorney General for its costs and legal expenses of $151,238. Patients in Florida who sought facelifts between June 1, 2009 and June 10, 2013 from Lifestyle Lift may also be eligible for a refund from this settlement. The only people getting a refund are those who canceled their surgeries and didn't get a refund of their down payment or pre-payment. Claims must be filed by September 8 [See full details].
The company generally uses "oral sedatives and injections of lidocaine" instead of general anesthesia to perform mini-facelifts, leaving the patient in a "twilight" or partial sleep state. Not using intravenous anesthesia means that the facility does not need to be accredited. Only half of their centers are currently accredited, but Shaw maintains that they are trying to have them all accredited.
Four years ago in 2009, Lifestyle Lift was fined $300,000 in New York for creating fake online reviews. The former director of the FTC believes that these two major settlements send "a very strong signal to this and other companies to pay close attention to the requirements."
June 25, 2013 Errata. In our original post we identified Lifestyle Lift’s payment of $25,000 as a fine instead of a donation to Seniors v. Crime http://www.seniorsvscrime.com/, a special project of the Florida Attorney General to, in part, “educate the public about scams and frauds”. We stated that Lifestyle Lift’s advertising terms “revolutionary” and “groundbreaking” were found by the FTC to be misleading, when the FTC was not involved in the investigation and Lifestyle Lift actually agreed to only cease using the phrase “revolutionary procedure” in its advertising. Finally, we stated that Lifestyle Lift agreed to reimburse the FTC for its legal expenses when they actually agreed to reimburse the Florida Attorney General for its costs and legal expenses of $151,238, according to the settlement entitled Assurance of Voluntary Compliance: http://myfloridalegal.com/webfiles.nsf/WF/MMFD-98RMSM/$file/Lifestyle+Lift.pdf. We regret the errors.
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