The National Do Not Call Registry was created in 2003 and has been wildly popular ever since. While most people are aware that the Do Not Call Registry (DNCR) exists, they aren’t quite sure what it does or what it prevents. Many people do not understand why they continue to receive unwanted calls even though they are on the list, and are unsure which types of communications violate the law and which do not.
The DNCR is not a list of people who never want to receive an unsolicited phone call. Instead, the DNCR was created as a way for consumers to limit the amount of marketing and sales calls that they receive, and also as a way to maximize compliance with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA).
In order to register for the DNCR, consumers need to either go online and register at www.DoNotCall.gov, or they may call 1-888-382-1222 from the number they want to register.
Once a person is listed on the DNCR, advertisers have up to 31 days to remove the number from their list and stop calling. At first, people had to re-register for the DNCR every five years; as of 2008, registration is permanent.
For people who have cell phones, the DNCR may not be very helpful. Federal law prohibits most unsolicited sales calls or texts to personal cell phones if the owner has not expressly opted in to receive messages. However, owners of cell phone numbers can choose to register if they wish. Similarly, the owners of fax numbers do not need to register with the DNCR, because these advertisers are also restricted in how they can communicate with these numbers.
Numbers on the DNCR cannot be contacted by telemarketers. This does not mean that they cannot be contacted by debt collectors, survey takers, political campaigns, or other entities that may have been given permission to contact that number.
Additionally, the DNCR applies only to personal numbers, not to business lines. Business phone numbers can receive several kinds of marketing or advertising calls per day without violating the rules of the registry.
When a company violates the DNCR, consumers can make a complaint with either the Federal Communications Commission or the Federal Trade Commission. The consumer will have to file a report detailing the type of phone that was used, when the call occurred, the company that called, the goods and services being offered, and whether the caller claimed to be contacting the consumer based on a particular exemption to the DNCR. The FCC or FTC may investigate the claim, and could fine or otherwise penalize the offending company.
Companies that violate the DNCR often violate other types of consumer protection laws, like the TCPA or the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act. If you think that an advertiser or marketer is violating the DNCR, you may be able to file a lawsuit seeking damages for your time and trouble.
At Loan Lawyers, our attorneys will review your evidence and help you choose a course of action that protects your rights. To schedule a free, no-risk consultation, contact one of our three South Florida offices today by calling (888) FIGHT-13 (344-4813).