The Exclusion Order 2001 continued to maintain that insurance companies and master franchises would be excluded from the MLM Act.
However, it also introduced the following rules for direct selling companies:
Safeguards - A participant cannot be required to provide any benefit or acquire any commodity in order to become a participant in the scheme, other than the purchase of demonstration equipment which is not for resale, at no more than cost price and for which no commission can be given out. A legitimate multi-level marketing scheme would not impose a financial risk on salespersons. For example, salespersons should be entitled to full refunds, under reasonable commercial terms, for any inventories kept or purchased by them which are not sold to end consumers, so long as the inventories are returned within a period of 60 days.
Behavioural checks - The companies must not misrepresent the scheme as get-rich-quick opportunities, and should not use fraud, coercion, harassment, or unconscionable means to force people to join the scheme. Instead, the companies should focus their efforts on promoting the quality and features of the products. If a company wishes to show potential participants the earning potential, they must keep records of the maximum, minimum, mean, mode and median earnings of their salespeople in the past.
Sharing of commission - It is all right for a salesperson to share commissions from several layers of salespersons recruited by him. However, such commissions must be generated by sale of the product or service in question, and not through the recruitment of additional participants into the scheme.