Judge in CRN’s complaint against NY denies the State’s motion to dismiss


New York State's motion to dismiss CRN's lawsuit against the law banning the sale of weight management and muscle-building supplements to minors has been partially denied, allowing CRN to proceed with its First Amendment Claim.

Photo © iStockphoto.com/ Kuzma

Photo © iStockphoto.com/ Kuzma

The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN; Washington, D.C.) has announced that the federal court in the Southern District of New York has denied the State of New York’s motion to dismiss CRN’s lawsuit against the new law banning the sale of weight management and muscle-building supplements to minors. While the lawsuit has not been dismissed, a majority of CRN's claims against the lawsuit have been dismissed with the exception of the association's First Amendment claim. CRN argues in its complaint that the law infringes on commercial speech, and therefore violates the First Amendment rights of manufacturers and retailers in the supplement industry.

While previous efforts for temporary injunctive relief from CRN were rejected, the judge did find that the association has standing to represent the interest of its members in this lawsuit. With the State’s motion for dismissal partially denied, CRN has cleared one of the last hurdles in its case and can now proceed to its First Amendment claim against the State.

"Even as we prepare to appeal the district court judge’s earlier decision on our preliminary injunction, we are encouraged by his ruling yesterday on our First Amendment argument,” said CRN’s president and CEO, Steve Mister, in a press release. “The judge denied the State of New York’s motion to dismiss our claim that the age restriction law infringes on lawful commercial speech and violates the First Amendment rights of our members to make truthful and lawful claims for their products.”

Mister added: “In holding that CRN’s claims made plausible the inference that the statute ‘might very well regulate protected speech,’ this decision allows us to move forward on the merits of the case. The judge has already recognized that CRN has standing to pursue these claims on behalf of our members. Yesterday’s ruling was another milestone toward invalidating these illegitimate restrictions. We are confident in the strength of our legal arguments.”

You can find an overview of the lawsuit’s progress here or listen to the latest episode of the Nutritional Outlook Podcast.

This article has been updated on May 15, 2024 at 2:55 PM Eastern to specify that CRN's First Amendment claim was the only claim to survive the State's motion for dismissal.

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