A North Carolina judge ruled in favor of the plaintiff in the amount of $20.5 million in a class action lawsuit brought against Dish Network. The trial lasted five days and Dish Network was ultimately found liable for 51,000 telemarketing calls placed by an inoperative Dish dealer. These calls were to individuals listed on the Do Not Call Registry. This unprecedented ruling sent shockwaves throughout the telemarketing industry as the individuals who received these calls were awarded $400 per violation. The attorneys involved exclaimed that this is to be a reminder of the importance of restrictions regarding unwarranted telemarketing calls.
The Do Not Call Registry came about through the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991 and protects individuals from receiving live, pre recorded, and automated calls also known as robocalls. Over 220 million Americans are listed in the registry and any individual on this list who receives a telemarketing phone call is entitled to compensation.
The Do Not Call Registry is just one of the many results of the TCPA. Robocalls are also restricted as a result of the act. Robocalls refer to recorded audio messages sent out using an automated dialing system (ATDS). These can range from telemarketing calls to debt collection calls which are both a violation of TCPA. An individual does not have to be registered in the Do Not Call Registry to be protected by these laws. These laws protect all Americans and you have the right to seek $500-$1500 per violation. Other violations include:
- Dialing a number in search of a third party
- Using ATDS to call, text, or leave messages on cell phones
- Calling residential phone lines (applies to telemarketers who lack “an established business relationship” with the consumer)
- Not identifying themselves during a call
- Calling consumers who have withdrawn consent
These restrictions are commonly violated by collection departments, telemarketers, and debt collectors in an effort to get the attention of the consumer. Whether they are trying to collect a debt or sell you a service, it is illegal for them to use robocalls to violate your privacy. Even if the calls are coming from a third party entity, it is the responsibility of the company to ensure that their marketing efforts stay within the confinements of the TCPA.
There are many Americans receiving these phone calls daily who are unaware that their right to privacy is being violated. It is of great importance that you are made aware of your rights to help you accurately identify when telemarketing and collection agencies have overstepped their boundaries. An experienced Florida TCPA attorney with The Law Offices of Jibrael S. Hindi can protect your rights as they pursue legal action. You do not pay a dime until Jibrael wins for you! Contact (844)-JIBRAEL to speak to a TCPA lawyer today!