ELECTION SEASON LEADS TO INCREASE IN TCPA CLASS ACTION LAWSUITS

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) prohibits calls to cell phones using an “automatic telephone dialing system” (ATDS) without the prior express consent of the called party.

Earlier this month, six of the nine Supreme Court justices ruled against the American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC) in regards to its challenge to the TCPA’s prohibition on auto-dialing cellphones, which makes it significantly more expensive for pollsters and phone vendors to reach cellphone users.

TCPA COMPLIANCE IS ON THE RISE

According to a recent news article published by Campaigns & Elections, “no matter the party lines, campaigns on both sides of the aisle have been falling prey to costly TCPA class actions.” TCPA compliance has become an even bigger priority during election season with technological advancements giving campaigns unprecedented abilities to efficiently and economically communicate directly with prospective voters.

Prior consent to receive autodialed text messages occurs when an individual voluntarily provides their phone number to the caller. A majority of courts, including the FCC, agree that once consent is given, a consumer may revoke their consent at any time.

Lawyers, courts, and the FCC have defined “ATDS” and the functions that meet the criteria for an ATDS in different ways. The Ninth Circuit provides the broadest interpretation, which has held that an ATDS is any device that has the “capacity” to dial “automatically” from a list of stored numbers without “human intervention.”

The FCC’s recently issued declaratory ruling regarding the use of peer-to-peer (P2P) text message platforms will not only help mitigate TCPA risk for both platform providers and their users, but will also give campaigns “the flexibility of leveraging technological automation to communicate efficiently and directly with voters while staying outside the regulatory space of the TCPA.” Needless to say, campaigns should still tread carefully.

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If you or someone you know has received unwanted calls or texts, please contact us for a free evaluation. You may be eligible to be included in a class-action lawsuit. We at Shub Law specialize in consumer protection lawsuits. Let’s get justice! Contact us now via email at leads@shublawyers.com or give us a call at 856-772-7200.

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