TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Telemarketing Law Question

Re: Telemarketing Law Question

Robert Bonomi (
Thu, 18 May 2006 14:54:10 -0000

In article <>,
mc <> wrote:

> What legal penalties apply to a telemarketer who autodials all the
> numbers in town that are not on the do-not-call list (without checking
> whether they are homes, businesses, hospitals...)?

> Our whole university was hit with a recorded ad for a local business
> this morning. Receptionists with rollover systems got, of course,
> numerous multiple copies.

Under 47 USC 227 the only restriction that applies to calling
businesses (which would include your University) is that the caller is
not allowed to simultaneously engage two or more numbers at the
university. Now, if the logs from your switch can establish that the
marketer was calling two (or more) extensions at the same time, you
can sue him. It's worth $500 for each call he originated _while_ he
had another line in use. Note: 'ringing', but not answered, *does*
count as 'in use' for that 'multiple lines' test.

The marketer was presumably acting as 'agent' for the business being
promoted -- this would make the business liable for the damages, as
well as the marketer.

Calling residences with a recorded message is illegal *except* for a
few special cases (prior express consent of the called party, bona
fide emergency situation, etc.). This restriction applies
*REGARDLESS* of whether the residence number is listed on the
Do-not-call list.

Calling 'emergency telephone numbers' -- '911', crisis lines, poison
control centers, etc. -- with a recorded message is similarly

As is calling "the telephone line of any guest room or patient room of
a hospital, health care facility, elderly home, or similar

*OR* cell-phones, or any other 'called-party pays' number.

"Businesses" enjoy _only_ the protection against multiple
*simultaneous* calls. One *might* be able to pursue a 'harassment'
action, but the outcome is far from certain.

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: B. Wright: "Re: Calling the USA While Traveling in Europe Query"
Go to Previous message: John Levine: "Re: Telemarketing Law Question"
May be in reply to: mc: "Telemarketing Law Question"
Next in thread: "Re: Telemarketing Law Question"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page