MLMLegal.com’s most requested FAQ this month answered in a video by MLM expert Attorney, Jeff Babener: How Many Level Deep (in the compensation plan) is it Legal to Go?

The issue of depth of levels seemed to be a major focus prior to the internet and other non-postal (mail) means of communication. In the late 1980’s, the U.S. Postal service examined the numbers of compensation plan levels to make a determination, whether or not, in its opinion, the depth of levels created a “lottery” element under U.S. Postal lottery laws, that forbid payment based on chance.

Various cases and consents sorted out a safe harbor (at least from the U.S. Postal Office standpoint) for at least four levels (not necessarily agreed to by the direct selling industry). Separately, the Postal Service looked for evidence of “supervisory requirements.” Most companies adopted specific supervisory requirements of sponsors to demonstrate some managerial activity by distributors.

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Have you finally decided to launch the network marketing business of your dreams? Or, have you decided that it’s time to take another look at your current MLM company to see how you can improve, grow and expand your business? Have you finally decided to launch the network marketing business of your dreams? Or, have you decided that it’s time to take another look at your current MLM company to see how you can improve, grow and expand your business?

Babener & Associates/http://www.mlmlegal.com/, with over 30 years in the legal business, offers an excellent and affordable resource for those who are starting or running a direct selling company: The Starting and Running the Successful MLM Company Conference. This seminar offers MLM startup entrepreneurs a place to meet a plethora of network marketing industry experts — all in one place — who will help educate you in the corporate areas that are important to you, such as software, legal, technology, recruiting, raising capital, or designing your compensation plan. Visit our speaker page to learn more about the speakers and the topics that they will be covering.

Attendees will also be in the same room with around 100s of other established and entrepreneurial MLM companies who help to provide encouragement, advice and support.

All attendees are educated about the network marketing industry, how to grow their companies, to are able to meet experts in the industry who will help to coach them on the MLM industry.

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Front loading generally refers to a process in which a MLM company, or a sponsoring distributor, encourages a new distributor to purchase far more product than is commercially reasonable under the circumstances. Often the “push” is explained to the recruit as necessary to qualify in the plan. This is an unacceptable practice is often one indicia of a pyramid scheme.

On the other hand, virtually all regulatory agencies recognize that a purchase of an “at cost” sales kit is an acceptable practice in the mainstream of leading direct selling companies. Such mandated kits are typically in the $50-$100 range. They generally entail “hard copy” or online supply of sales and marketing materials as well as ongoing sales and marketing materials updates for a year. Typically the mandated sales kit does not include product and generally a company offers an optional deluxe kit that may include product. Such an optional kit, which is often referred to as a “fast start” kit, may contain several hundred dollars of product. This is not unusual. Although the same regulatory standards on

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Sign up for the MLM News Global newsletter for top headlines, news stories, scam alerts, videos, articles, and more information on the network marketing industry, by www.mlmattorney.com.

Sign up for the MLM News Global newsletter for top headlines, news stories, scam alerts, videos, articles, and more information on the network marketing industry.

There are a lot of outspoken bloggers and critics online, as well as negative opinions floating around the social networks, but the positives drown out the negatives. It’s not hard to find a loud voice criticizing the direct selling industry through a quick Google search. And it is true… there are many pyramid/Ponzi schemes, primarily internationally based, that parade themselves as MLM/direct delling… and they are not. They are merely pyramid headhunting recruitment schemes that often use bogus products and services as an excuse to move money. The entire emphasis of such organizations is to cause investors to pay money and cause others to do the same, with a thin veneer of an actual product or service. In fact, the revenue to pay commissions instead comes from distributor payments and not sales to the ultimate user.

Despite this, the facts remains MLM and direct selling are a major part of the fabric of commerce. Statistics on 2014 sales, compiled by the World Federation of Direct Selling Associations, indicate global sales of $183 billion and 100 million distributors. In the U.S., there are 18 million distributors posting $35 billion in sales. Numerous direct selling companies are traded on the NYSE.

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The MLM Startup Conference for Executives of Startup and Existing Direct Selling Companies takes place February 26 & 27, 2015 in Las Vegas. This is the 70th annual, two-day conference, featuring industry experts and invaluable tools for the MLM startup entrepreneur. Call our office to register or for additional information: 503-226-6600 or 800-231-2162.

The Next MLM Startup Conference Takes Place March 5 & 6, 2015!

The Next MLM Startup Conference Takes Place March 5 & 6, 2015!

HOW CAN I FIND OUT MORE?

Visit the website:

www.mlmlegal.com

Or, read visit our blogs:

http://mlmlegal.com/MLMBlog/ and http://mlmattorney.com/blog/

Extensive information about the conference can be found here.

Watch the MLM Startup Conference videos:

MLMlegal Releases New Film on MLM Startup Conference – Produced by Networkingstar.com

The MLM Startup Conference in Las Vegas

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MLMLegal.com Releases Comprehensive Analysis on Landmark Case on Pyramid Guidance and the Role of “Personal Use” in Pyramid Analysis

PORTLAND, OR–(Marketwired – June 26, 2014) –

Click for the full article analysis and actual BurnLounge case at BurnLounge Appeal Decision: Guidance on Pyramid v. Legitimate MLM and the Role of Personal Use in Pyramid Analysis

Excerpt of the BurnLounge Analysis Article:

On June 2, 2014, in the case of FTC v. BurnLounge, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a seminal decision, affirming a lower court finding that the BurnLounge MLM (multilevel marketing) program was an illegal pyramid scheme, in violation of section 5(a) of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Act, a decision that will dramatically impact the landscape of direct selling to provide guidance on two fundamental legal issues:

(1) What activity constitutes a “pyramid scheme?”

(2) What is the role of “personal use” (by distributors) in pyramid case analysis?

Stakeholders: “We Won!!” Proxy Wars…

Victory has 100 fathers and defeat is an orphan. – John Kennedy (1961)

As with any inconclusive war, the stakeholders offered immediate statements of victory or vindication.

That is, other than BurnLounge. BurnLounge lost, and a permanent injunction was affirmed.

However, BurnLounge was a proxy war on the tests for “pyramid” and the role of “personal use” in pyramid analysis, among the interested parties, short sellers of publicly traded direct selling companies, publicly traded direct selling companies, industry spokespersons such as the DSA, the FTC, MLM critics, etc.

Each, in turn, issued press releases or statements claiming victory and validation of their respective positions.

The BurnLounge decision offered guidance for all stakeholders and a clear message for “going forward.”

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MLMLegal.com Launches the Innovation Campaign for the October 23rd & 24th, 2014 MLM Startup Conference!

 

Fill out the short survey here to receive two free tickets (worth $345.00!) to the next MLM Startup Conference in Las Vegas!**

For over 27 years MLMLegal.com and Babener & Associates

Fill out our Innovation Campaign form to receive your two free tickets today!

Fill out our Innovation Campaign form to receive your two free tickets today!

has hosted the most prestigious MLM conference for executives of startup and existing direct selling companies. In celebration of our 69th conference, we are offering two complimentary tickets* – worth $345.00! – to attend the esteemed event in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In our ongoing effort to offer the absolute best network marketing conference available, we invite you to participate in our October 23 & 24, 2014 Innovation Campaign. To receive your two free tickets, fill out our Innovation Campaign form on our Innovation Campaign page.

We invite the input, ideas and innovation from the very MLM company owners who are in the startup and launch phases of their companies. We strive to offer the best conference in the United States. MLMLegal.com always covers current issues and events at all of our conferences, but this time it is different! We want your input in the Innovation Campaign!

Are you an owner or executive of a startup of existing direct selling company? Do you want to attend the 69th Starting and Running the Successful MLM Company Conference for FREE?! Fill out our short survey below! Share with us your experience as a network marketing entrepreneur!

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Make sure your postcard (or sales materials) stand out in the crowd.

Make sure your postcard (or sales materials) stand out in the crowd.

Designing an attention-grabbing postcard to mail out to your contact list can be an effective and an inexpensive way to reach out to potential customers. Postcards are effective in one sense because they do not have to be opened by the recipient. A well-designed mailer can grab the reader’s attention and urge them to respond to a call to action. Here are seven tips to creating an effective postcard:

–          Design your postcard with a simple, yet effective, message. Make sure the headlines are big and bold, as well as attention-grabbing. Keep your text short and to the point. Place a word limit on yourself and stick to it. Don’t go overboard and write a novella.

–          Incorporate eye-catching, high quality photos and images that are royalty free. Search the web for websites that offer free access to royalty free images. There are many websites that will allow you to use their royalty free photos by simply signing up for a free account. Make sure that the images you choose are vivid and relevant to your content.

–          Integrate a timely message onto your postcard or sales material. Make sure you create a “call to action” by crafting a deadline or limited time offer. Simple statements such as “contact us within 30 days,” “respond by” or “act now” will urge the reader to act.

–          Include your name and/or the name of your business on the sales material. Make sure that you keep your branding consistent throughout each batch that is shipped so that your customers/potential customers will think of your company when they think of your product/service.

–          Enclose your contact information, such as your email address, phone number and website in your sales materials. Customers must know how you can be contacted. Also, it may seem obvious but, make sure you double check for any spelling or grammatical mistakes. It’s very common for errors to be printed and shipped on sales materials – one wrong number or letter can mean a wasted batch of postcards, not to mention wasted money.

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A full room of entrepreneurs listen to industry experts at the MLM Startup Conference in Las Vegas.

The next Starting and Running the Successful MLM Company Conference is already scheduled! On May 15th & 16th, 2014 we are hosting the MLM Conference for the 27th year! This is now our 67th annual conference (held almost consistently three times per year over the last 27 years). All executives/owners of MLM, direct selling, network marking, and party plan companies are welcome to attend. This is the original MLM Startup Conference, hosted and perfected by direct selling industry expert, MLM Attorney Jeff Babener.

WHO?

Direct Selling Attorney, Jeff Babener, Founder of Babener & Associates and Sponsor of the MLM Startup Conference, has over 25 years of experience in the industry, representing companies such as Avon, Nikken, Melaleuca, Discovery Toys, Usana, and NuSkin.

MLM Industry Consultant, Mike Sheffield, with The Sheffield Group and Co-Sponsor of the MLM Startup Conference, has helped launch over 800 companies over the last 27 years.

Over the course of two days, you will hear from many leaders in the direct selling industry, who include:

Jeffrey A. Babener, of Portland, Oregon, Conference Chair and Sponsor, www.mlmlegal.com, is the principal attorney in the law firm of Babener & Associates. He represents leading U.S. and foreign companies in the direct selling industry. He has been advisor to such companies as Avon, Discovery Toys, Nikken, Shaklee NuSkin, Excel, Usana, Fuller Brush, Cell Tech, Kaire, Sunrider, Melaleuca, etc. He is a frequent lecturer and has been interviewed on the industry, and published, in such publications as Money, Inc., Atlantic Monthly, Success, Entrepreneur, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, Home Office Computing, Business Start-Ups, Wealth Builders and Money Maker’s Monthly. He is editor of the industry publication, Direct Sales Legaline. Mr. Babener is also the author of the books, Tax Guide for MLM/Direct Selling Distributors, Network Marketer’s Guide to Success, The MLM Corporate Handbook, Network Marketing: Window of Opportunity and Network Marketing: What You Should Know. He is editor of one of most frequented network marketing educational web sites, www.mlmlegal.com.

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