Prerecorded Messages, Telemarketing Calls Class Action Lawsuit Investigation
Prerecorded Messages, Telemarketing Calls: Who’s Affected?
If so, your privacy rights may have been violated.
It is annoying to receive unwanted phone calls and text messages. But did you know it can also be against the law?
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was enacted in 1991 to protect consumers from annoying telemarketers and other types of solicitors. The TCPA restricts certain types of calls and other communications to consumers, such as:
- Calls to cellphones and residential numbers that use artificial or prerecorded voices or that are dialed using automated dialing technology (sometimes known as “robocalls”), even if the call goes to voicemail
- Unsolicited text messages
- Calls to numbers listed on the National Do Not Call Registry or on company-specific “do-not-call” lists
- Unsolicited advertisements to fax machines – both to businesses and residences – without the recipient’s prior express invitation or permission (i.e., “junk faxes”)
The TCPA was enacted to stop companies from invading people’s privacy and engaging in unwanted and annoying telephone solicitation. Consumers whose rights under the TCPA are violated may be able to collect between $500 and $1,500 per call or text message.
Do You Qualify?
If you received a telemarketing call, a prerecorded message, or a text message from a company and you did NOT provide that company consent to do so, you may have a claim against that company for violating the TCPA.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Do NOT delete your caller ID record or any voicemail or text messages you received. These phone records and messages could be important proof that a company illegally contacted you in violation of the TCPA.
Fill out the form on this page for a case evaluation with an experienced TCPA attorney, free of charge.
Unwanted Sales Calls and Text Messages: What’s Illegal?
Have you been harassed with unsolicited phone calls and text messages from a business you have no relationship with?
Unless you have provided prior express consent to be contacted, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act prohibits the following in certain circumstances:
- Making calls to cell phones or to residential numbers using an artificial voice or a recorded message — even if the call goes to voicemail
- Calling consumers who specifically asked the company not to call them (companies must maintain and honor an internal “do-not-call” list)
- Calling consumers who registered their numbers with the National Do Not Call Registry
- Sending unsolicited advertising faxes
In the event of a TCPA violation, a consumer may sue for up to $1,500 for each violation or to recover actual monetary loss, whichever is higher. If you believe you’re the victim of a TCPA violation, fill out the form on this page now for a free, no-obligation review of your potential TCPA class action lawsuit case.
What is Exempt from the TCPA?
There are some calls and text messages that are exempt from the TCPA. These include calls made in the following contexts:
- Financial Institutions. Financial institutions may send voice or text messages to customers if the messages are regarding time-sensitive financial issues about the person’s account. In such cases, financial institutions are prohibited from including any sort of marketing in these messages.
- Utilities. Utility companies may send non-marketing messages in cases of emergency, shut-off notifications, and service notifications.
- Education. Schools may send informational messages about emergencies, absences, and school closures.
- Non-profits. Non-profit organizations may be exempt based on the content of the message, but there is not an across-the-board exemption for non-profits.
- Government Entities. A local government may send a text message to those who live in the area to inform or warn them about a certain situation.
- Emergencies. Emergency messaging is the one area where there is a general TCPA exemption.
What is Prior Express Consent?
In order for a company to send a prerecorded message or text message, it must first have “prior express consent.”
The FCC previously interpreted this to include oral approval or implied approval to receive calls, such as when someone provides a phone number to the company when purchasing a product or service.
As of Oct. 16, 2013, the FCC interpreted “prior express consent” as requiring a signed, written agreement, specifically agreeing to receive text messages or telemarketing calls and voicemails using a prerecorded voice.
How Do You Document Evidence of TCPA Violations?
It is difficult to sue a company for TCPA violations if you do not know who the company is or how to contact them, or if you do not have a record of the calls they made. If you are considering filing a TCPA lawsuit or class action lawsuit, you should take the following steps to document violations:
- Do not delete your caller ID record
- Save all voice messages and text messages
- Make a written record of the calls/text messages you are receiving, including the date and time of the call, the caller’s identity, and a summary of the conversation or message
- Keep a copy of any written requests to revoke your consent to receive calls
How Is the TCPA Enforced?
TCPA compliance can be enforced by both individuals and the state in a number of ways:
- Individuals can sue for damages in court if a company has placed an unauthorized call to them
- States may pursue civil action against the organizations that have breached the rights of their citizens
- Companies that violate the TCPA may face penalties from cases filed with the Federal Communications Commission
Join a TCPA Class Action Lawsuit
If a company contacted you using an artificial or prerecorded voice, text message spam, or telemarketing calls without your express consent, your rights may have been violated and you may be entitled to take legal action.
You may be able to file a TCPA class action lawsuit and recover damages for TCPA violations and a permanent injunction against the company unlawfully contacting you.
Fill out the form below for a free review. An attorney may contact you to discuss your potential claims.
The law firm responsible for the content of this page is:
Dovel & Luner, LLP
201 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 600
Santa Monica, CA 90401