Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)
The same artificial intelligence and automation technology driving many innovations that improve our lives in the modern day are also responsible for some of the more annoying and intrusive aspects of it; “robo calls” and auto-dialed, prerecorded messages from telemarketers and debt collectors that frequently disrupt our daily lives, even at outrageously late or early hours, and with little regard for the frequency of the calls or their actual recipient. Incredibly, many of these calls are placed while disregarding that the number being dialed was placed by the consumer on the Do-Not-Call registry. Debt collectors and telemarketers will often place large numbers of such calls, because they know that too few consumers are aware of their rights in this regard.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) restricts telemarketers from calling consumers who have registered with the Do-Not-Call Registry, and also prohibits use of automated calls, pre-recorded messages, or text messages to cell phones without the consent or prior authorization of the cell phone’s owner. The TCPA also contains protections for residential phone line users who do not have an “established business relationship” permitting the pre-recorded calls from the telemarketer/seller. The TCPA further protects consumers by prohibiting telemarketing and advertising calls before 8:00 am or after 9:00 pm.
The TCPA applies to:
- Telemarking calls
- Auto-dialed calls
- Pre-recorded calls
- Text Messages
- Unsolicited faxes