If so, you have a tool to stop Junk Text Messages
Telemarketing has been in existence since the telephone became widely used in the late 1800s. Even as society has largely made the switch from landline telephones to cell phones, we have not escaped those annoying sales calls.
If you are getting a lot of sales calls and you want them to stop, you can register your phone number on the National Do Not Call Registry. This Registry, also known as the Do Not Call List, was created to protect people from unwanted sales calls. While adding your number to the Do Not Call List will stop calls from telemarketers, it does not stop all unwanted phone calls. If you are interested in registering on the National Do Not Call Registry, it helps to understand how to register and what the registry does. In this guide, we will cover the most important information about the Do Not Call List that you need to know when registering.
If you are still getting sales calls and junk texts from telemarketers after registering to the Do Not Call List, our attorneys at Anderson + Wanca can help you take legal action.
How to Add Your Number to the Registry
Registering your home or cell number is simple. You can register on the DoNotCall.gov website or call 1-888-382-1222 (TTY: 1-866-290-4236) from the phone number you want to register. After you register your phone number, you will get an email with a link that will allow you to finish the registration. It is free to register your phone number and the registration never expires.
Registering your number adds it to the list immediately, but it may take up to 31 days to stop receiving sales calls.
What Does the Registry Do?
The Registry is a list of numbers that telemarketers are not allowed to call or text. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) cannot block calls and cannot stop telemarketers who continue to call or text numbers on the Registry. If you are continuing to get calls from telemarketers after registering, you can block them or report them to the FTC to stop them.
What calls are allowed?
The Do Not Call List is only for telemarketers making sales calls. There are certain types of calls still allowed to be made to people on the Registry. The following calls are allowed as long as they do not contain a sales pitch:
- Political calls
- Charitable calls
- Purely informational calls
- Debt collection calls
You can also receive calls from companies that you have recently done business with, and these calls can include a sales pitch. These companies can only call you with your permission and you can ask them to stop calling you.
Robocalls are calls that play a recorded message trying to sell something. Unless the company making the robocalls has your written permission, these calls are illegal. When you get robocalls, hang up on them immediately and report them to the FTC. You can also take legal action against illegal robocalls.
How to Report Unwanted Calls
There are two different scenarios in which a call or text may be reported. If you have received unsolicited calls and texts but have not lost any money, you can report them at DoNotCall.gov. If you did lose money because of a scam call or text, then you need to report it at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Your report should include your number, the number that appears from the call or text (even if the number is likely fake), and the date and time of the call. Always make sure to report the number the call came from in case it happens to be the real number of the caller. Fake numbers can also sometimes be traced back to the real caller by the FTC and law enforcement.
Reporting unsolicited calls and texts helps the FTC and law enforcement identify scammers based on their calling patterns. Those who have placed an illegal robocall or text may be fined up to $43,792 per incident. The FTC works to stop illegal calls by suing companies responsible for making the calls and working with law enforcement to track down robocallers.
National Do Not Call Registry FAQ
The following are some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the Do Not Call List that can help you better understand what it is and what it does:
- Can cell phones and landlines be put in the Do Not Call Registry?
Yes, you can register cell numbers and landline numbers, the Registry does not treat them any differently.
- Should I let someone who offers to add my number to the Registry do it?
It is safer to register your number yourself and it is free and easy to do.
- Can I register more than one number?
You can register as many numbers as you want, but you can only register three at a time online. When calling in to register your number, you need to make a call from each number that you want registered. For each number you register, you will receive an email with a link that must be clicked within 72 hours to finish the registration.
- Can I register a business number or fax number?
No, the Registry is only for personal numbers.
- Can I remove my number from the Registry?
Your number will remain on the registry until you take the action to remove it. You can remove your number by calling 1-888-382-1222 and your number will be removed the next day.
- How does the FTC use my information?
The FTC only collects the phone number you register and the email address for confirmation. Your phone number is added to the Do Not Call List so telemarketers can avoid calling it. Your email address is stored separately and never shared with telemarketers.
- What should I do if my number cannot be registered over the phone?
In this case, it is best to register your number at donotcall.gov.
- What should I do if I try to register over the phone and I am told that the number I called from does not match the number I entered?
Once again, you should try registering your number at donotcall.gov.
- Do I need to remove my old number when getting a new number?
No, disconnected and reassigned numbers are automatically removed.
- What if my number is disconnected and then reconnected?
When this happens, you might have to register your number again. Check first to see if your number is still on the Registry.
- Do I need to register my number again if my area code changes or splits?
No, your number will be registered within the 90-day period in which your old area code still works.
Those on the National Do Not Call List Can Stop Junk Texts and Robocalls
Last year the Supreme Court struck down the FCC regulations defining what constitutes an autodialer. That decision has made it very difficult to sue under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”) to stop and recover for unsolicited or junk texts since the TCPA requires the recipient prove the sender used an autodialer to send the texts.
However, if you are registered on the National DO NOT CALL list you may be able to sue to recover for unsolicited / junk texts you receive. Under the DO NOT CALL Law, you don’t have to prove an autodialer was used.
So, if you have been registered on the National DO NOT CALL List, have received two (2) or more texts after 30 days of being registered, you can sue the sender of the texts. If you would like to sue to stop receiving unsolicited / junk texts, contact us for a free consultation. We would like to hear from you, contact us for a free consultation.
Contact Anderson + Wanca
Anderson + Wanca pursues class action lawsuits against companies that send unsolicited text messages if you are registered on the National Do Not Call List. The Do Not Call sections of the TCPA provide for a recovery of up to $500.00 for each violation.