The word “opportunity” is a generic term for the chance to advance, better one’s economic state, health, social position, etc. However, in the context of direct selling, “opportunity,” in addition to the chance to make money, is a reference to the “business opportunity” of a direct selling/MLM marketing program.
Two dozen states and the FTC regulate the offering of business opportunities in a parallel fashion to their regulation of franchise opportunities. Because of the low threshold of entry fees, typically, modestly-priced at-cost sales kits, the business opportunity of MLM companies is generally exempt from state business opportunity laws. In addition, the FTC has indicated that it generally does not view the offering of an MLM opportunity to trigger the FTC Business Opportunity Rule. Of course, multiple states have adopted specific MLM statutes to provide guidelines for the offering of a MLM opportunity. All of these statutes can be found in the statutes library at www.mlmlegal.com.
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