With today’s mobile and cloud-based technologies, companies can access and interact with consumers more conveniently and efficiently than ever. But businesses must understand the legal risks before leveraging these technologies. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)—an antiquated consumer protection statute, enacted in the infancy of the digital and wireless age—governs today’s communications technologies, along with a patchwork of related federal and state privacy rules.
Congress enacted the TCPA to protect consumer privacy from businesses using mass telemarketing methods of the late twentieth century, including “autodialers.” The statute forbids the intrusive use of indiscriminate automated technologies without an applicable exception or the express consent of the receiving party. Under the TCPA, plaintiffs can sue for statutory damages of up to $1,500 per violation. These generous remedial provisions have attracted the attention of class action lawyers seeking to aggregate claims and threaten potential liability measured in tens or even hundreds of millions of dollars. State and federal agencies also enforce the law by assessing fines and penalties.
The FCC has expanded the law’s reach to cover new communication channels, such as text and instant messaging, and new methods to contact consumers, such as software that dials from targeted lists. Any business that plans to communicate with consumers using automated technology, even when the intended communication is not telemarketing, must be careful to avoid the compliance pitfalls. Our team helps businesses understand and comply with the TCPA, the FCC’s implementing rules, and the various state laws.
Businesses operating in regulated industries that deliver products or services, including:
We have experience with complex consumer privacy, data protection and security laws impacting businesses nationwide, including, among others:
We’ve also provided compliance counseling to a variety of clients, including advising:
Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly | January 23, 2020
This article mentions Manchester Complex Commercial Disputes partner Dan Deane and Boston Complex Commercial Disputes associate Troy Lieberman, who earned a favorable ruling on behalf of defendant Boston Scientific in a class action suit alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
Rochester Business Journal | January 17, 2020
In his latest monthly column, Rochester Corporate partner Jeremy Wolk analyzes a recent action by the Federal Trade Commission to crack down on VoIP providers who turn a blind eye to their clients’ unlawful telemarketing practices. Washington, DC, Complex Commercial Disputes associate Brian Donnelly and Rochester Complex Commercial Disputes associate Zach Osinski contributed to the article.
Rochester Business Journal | November 15, 2019
In the latest installment of his monthly column, Rochester Corporate partner Jeremy Wolk analyzes state-level legislation aimed at enhancing consumer privacy rights and protections, similar to the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation. Rochester Corporate associate Jenny Holmes contributed to the column.
Law360 | July 12, 2019
This article highlights Boston Intellectual Property associate Troy Lieberman, who is representing Boston Scientific in a proposed class action suit alleging violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
Bloomberg Law | June 11, 2019
San Francisco Complex Commercial Disputes partner Karl Belgum wrote this contributed article explaining that businesses need to perform a self-assessment of the risks of automated customer contact, given the FCC’s failure to clarify the scope of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
Rochester Business Journal | January 25, 2019
Rochester Corporate partner Jeremy Wolk wrote this contributed column analyzing a lawsuit filed against Facebook in Washington, DC, alleging violations of state-level consumer protection laws by the social media company. This article incorporates perspective from an alert written by Washington Complex Commercial Disputes associate Brian Donnelly, Rochester Corporate associate Jenny Holmes, and Los Angeles Government Investigations & White Collar Defense associate Karina Puttieva.
Law360 | November 13, 2018
Boston Intellectual Property associate Troy Lieberman is quoted in this article looking at possible FCC changes to the definition of “autodialer” in regard to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
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