New FCC Rule: Consent to Receive Automated Calls/Texts Can Be Given to One Company at a Time
📋 The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently issued an order adopting a new rule that will limit the ability of businesses to contact potential customers found using lead generators.
Background: It’s been well established by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) that companies cannot make autodialed calls and texts or prerecorded voice messages without having the recipients’ express written consent. The issue addressed by the FCC’s order is that companies have been obtaining consent – but not just for themselves. To the detriment of the people, companies often obtain blanket consents that allow numerous companies to contact an individual, in what is called “the lead generator loophole.” They then pass along the names and phone numbers of the consenting individuals as “leads” to other companies.
The new “One-to-One Consent Rule” closes the lead generator loophole by mandating:
🔸Individuals can provide consent to receive robotexts and robocalls to only one company at a time.
🔸The calls/texts they receive after they provide consent must be “logically and topically associated with the interaction that prompted the consent”
📌 In short, the FCC has clarified that a automated call/text consents cannot simply list or hyperlink to a list of multiple telemarketers to which the consent may apply. Companies that violate the one-to-one consent rule could be subject to statutory damages under the TCPA, which are stated $500 per call/text and $1500 per call/text if done “knowingly”. (THEY ADD UP QUICK!!)
This new rule will most significantly affect business that utilize lead generators to contact new business leads. The financial services, real estate, and insurance industries are just a few that commonly rely on this practice.
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