TCPA Monitor

Comprehensive news and analysis of TCPA regulation and related matters

Jan 18, 2016

Summary of the FTC’s 2014-15 Biennial Report on the National Do Not Call Registry

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is required by the Do-Not-Call Registry Fee Extension Act of 2007 to prepare a biennial report on the National Do Not Call Registry.  In compliance with this Act, the FTC has recently released its report for fiscal years 2014 and 2015.  In the report, the FTC summarizes the current operations of the Registry, the impact [...]

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Dec 22, 2015

Courts Disagree over Human Intervention Aspect of FCC’s ATDS Definition

Earlier this year, the FCC released a Declaratory Ruling (FCC Ruling or Ruling) broadening the TCPA’s definition of automatic telephone dialing system (ATDS) to cover equipment with the “potential ability” to autodial telephone numbers.  The Ruling also contains inconsistent statements regarding whether, and to what extent, the necessity of human intervention is relevant when determining if a system is an [...]

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Nov 05, 2015

Ninth Circuit: Provision of Phone Number gives Prior Express Consent for Calls or Texts under the TCPA

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals joined the Eleventh and Sixth Circuits to hold that a person provides prior express consent for non-marketing calls and texts by providing their cell phone number to the caller.  The opinion mirrors rulings issued by the FCC and other federal courts; however, it is noteworthy because it provides controlling precedent for a broad interpretation of consent in a circuit where [...]

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Nov 04, 2015

Feds Pass Bill Exempting Government Debt Calls

The recently passed Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 enables companies to contact consumers’ wireless phones via modern dialing technologies for debts owed to or guaranteed by the federal government.  The measure was added during closed-door conferences shortly before the bill was reintroduced to each chamber for a final vote.  Approval of the bill comes on the heels of a July FCC declaratory ruling and order on [...]

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Oct 30, 2015

More Courts Weigh in on ATDS Definition After FCC 2015 Ruling

Continuing a trend started by the Northern District of California in Luna and Derby, two more district courts have issued largely favorable opinions related to the definition of an ATDS in the wake of the FCC’s recent Declaratory Ruling (FCC Ruling or Ruling).  Conversely, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, with jurisdiction over the mid-Atlantic region of the U.S., issued a non-precedential opinion that [...]

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Oct 21, 2015

Shuster to Provide Congressional Staff Briefing on TCPA

MPS Partner Michele Shuster continues to bring her insight and experience to the national discussion of the TCPA. Participating in a panel discussion in Washington, DC this week, Michele will provide a briefing to congressional staff on the TCPA, sharing its history and intent, and in particular, the challenges surrounding this summer’s controversial FCC Omnibus Declaratory Ruling, which has created [...]

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Oct 01, 2015

FTC Announces Telemarketer Fees Will Stay the Same

The Federal Trade Commission recently announced that the fees telemarketers pay for accessing phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry will stay the same in 2016.  The fees are stated in the Federal Register notice, 16 C.F.R. Part 310. Telemarketers are required to subscribe to the Do Not Call Registry every year.  Telemarketers download the numbers on the [...]

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Oct 01, 2015

Yahoo Texting Suit Not Certified as a Class Action

Readers may recall Sherman v. Yahoo! Inc., a California case that adopted a broad interpretation of what constituted an automatic telephone dialing system (ATDS) last year. The Sherman court determined that a telephone system that had the present or future capacity to store, produce, or call randomly or sequentially generated telephone numbers would be considered an ATDS subject to regulation [...]

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Sep 21, 2015

FCC Clarifies That efaxes Must Comply With TCPA

In its recent decision “In the Matter of Westfax, Inc., Petition for Consideration and Clarification,” the FCC clarified that efaxes submitted by conventional fax machine are subject to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA).  Efaxes are fax messages that are sent from a traditional fax machine regardless of their designation form (paper or email).  Under the TCPA, a [...]

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Sep 15, 2015

FCC vs. Lyft: Regulator Challenges Automatic Consent

This past Friday, the FCC’s enforcement bureau sent a citation and order to the popular self-taxi service Lyft regarding alleged violations of the TCPA.  Unlike traditional cab providers, Lyft drivers can only be hailed via a phone or through its website.  Passengers must register with Lyft by phone number or using a Facebook account, and must accept its Terms of Service (ToS) to access fares and request transportation.  The ToS contain language that [...]

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