By Ross H. Schmierer
In our Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) cases, we oftentimes deal with companies that try to shield themselves from liability by pointing the finger at the telemarketing company it hired to place annoying robocalls or send junk texts. Fortunately for consumers, however, Courts and the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) allow a person that has received annoying robocalls and intrusive text messages to use agency principles to hold companies that hire such irresponsible telemarketers liable for TCPA violations. In other words, a company cannot simply avoid TCPA liability by merely hiring a different company to make its unlawful calls or by burying its head in the sand.
Earlier this week, an information security and risk management consulting company called CompliancePoint released the results of its survey of telemarketers relating to the TCPA. This survey highlights the importance of the aforementioned legal principles. Incredibly, the survey revealed that the majority of telemarketers report that their organizations are not compliant with TCPA regulations. Specifically, the survey further revealed:
• Only 30% of telemarketers report full awareness of TCPA rules and guidelines;
• 48% reported their organizations were either not compliant, or that they were even unaware of the existence of the TCPA; and
• Only 23% reported that their organization was fully compliant, while 29% reported they were somewhat compliant.
When asked about their individual level of awareness surrounding the TCPA, the results were even more shocking, Specifically, the survey revealed:
• 71% percent stated that they were either not aware, or only somewhat aware of telemarketer rules and guidelines for compliance; and
• 51% of telemarketers said that their organization makes calls after 9PM, a direct violation of TCPA regulations.
In summary, this alarming new survey reaffirms the important role agency principles play in helping the TCPA accomplish its laudable goals of compensating consumers for the incessant and annoying robocalls that plague our society as well as to deter companies from hiring irresponsible telemarketing companies in the first place. Our firm has fought to preserve and enforce this important doctrine in Courts all over the country. In doing so, we have prevented companies from avoiding TCPA liability by outsourcing their telemarketing activities to unsupervised third parties, particularly when the telemarketers are judgment proof, unidentifiable, or located outside the United States.
If you or loved one or a friend has received a junk text on your cell phone or an automated or pre-recorded robocall, please contact us for a free consultation to discuss your options.