One of the most frequent issues arising in TCPA cases is personal jurisdiction over a Defendant. This is true because calls can be made from anywhere to anywhere. And while courts generally find jurisdiction can be asserted over a corporate Defendant (the rule is different for employees) may exist where that Defendant intentionally calls into a forum in the hopes of contracting business there, the law is quite different where the consumer crosses jurisdictional bounds without the Defendant’s knowledge.
Well folks the Governor of Louisiana declared a state of emergency today ahead of the expected landfall of Tropical Storm/Hurricane Laura and Tropical Depression 14/Tropical Storm/Hurricane Marco.
Obviously, all of us here at TCPAworld.com are rooting for everyone in the path of those storms to come out of this safe and sound.
So, if you haven’t met Anthony Paronich yet remind me to introduce you sometime.
In his latest “masterpiece”, he has convinced a court to utterly reject a Defendant’s motion to dismiss a TCPA suit arising out of repeat-player Andrew Perrong’s (yes, that Andrew Perrong) apparent misdeeds.
As you may recall, in the Amerifactors Ruling, the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau of the FCC ruled that “an online fax service that effectively receives faxes ‘sent as email over the Internet’ and [which] is not itself ‘equipment which has the capacity . . . to transcribe text or images (or both) from an electronic signal received over a regular telephone line onto paper’ is not a ‘telephone facsimile machine’ and thus falls outside the scope of the [TCPA’s] statutory prohibition.” Amerifactors Declaratory Ruling, 34 FCC Rcd at 1950-51 (¶ 3).
Ad fraud has been a problem for some time, and a well-known problem at that. Back in 2016, a Mashable headline read, “Ad fraud could become the second biggest organized crime enterprise behind the drug trade.” Even Virginia Senator Mark Warner relayed this stat in a tweet to emphasize the problem.
In January, the U.S. Justice Department filed a civil suit against ECommerce National, accusing it of carrying out hundreds of millions of fraudulent robocalls, and connecting con artists posing as Social Security Administration officials with unsuspecting victims who volunteered personal information or money.
Ad fraud is a major problem for advertisers across all industries, and according to Juniper Research, it’s a problem that’s about to get much worse. The firm predicts that while advertisers stood to lose $42 billion in 2019, they’re going to lose upwards of $100 billion by 2023.
The consumer privacy landscape is rapidly changing. Europe has been leading the charge with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). In the US, however, companies are faced with a patchwork of laws.
On July 27, 2020, the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau designated USTelecom’s Industry Traceback Group (ITG) as the official consortium to coordinate efforts to trace back the source of illegal robocalls. ITG is a collection of voice service providers that focuses on tracing the source of suspected unlawful robocalls. If ITG detects likely illegal call traffic, it may work with participants in the telecommunications ecosystem to terminate that traffic and refer complaints to federal agencies.
As we reported just the other day, the Seventh Circuit recently shut down “blackmail” schemes perpetrated by “objectors” that insert phony challenges to meritorious settlements in a bid to skim a few hundred thousand bucks from the class counsel’s fee award. And now we have a case that may show the flip side of the coin—TCPA class settlements that result in huge pay days to class counsel where the underlying claims of class members may have lacked any merit to begin with. And no one was there to object.
A district court in Kansas issued a ruling yesterday reviewing the TCPA’s enigmatic ATDS definition and concluding that the statute only applies to equipment that calls randomly or sequentially and does not apply to dialers that call from a list of numbers. If you have been living under a TCPA rock for a year, the Circuit Courts of Appeal are badly split on the functionalities required of a dialer to qualify as an ATDS.
Continuing its campaign against illegal robocalls, particularly the spoofed variety, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on June 9, 2020, proposed a $225 million fine – the “largest in the FCC’s 86-year history” – against “Texas-based health insurance telemarketers for apparently making approximately 1 billion illegally spoofed robocalls.”
Lots is being made of Pederson v. Donald J. Trump for President, Civil No. 19-2735 (JRT/HB), 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 99974 (D. Minn. June 8, 2020). I mean Trump + robocalls= news, fake or otherwise. But–as so often happens in TCPAWorld–the most important piece of the case is being almost entirely overlooked. (Obviously, the Baron’s review of the decision is an outstanding read–but this blog focuses solely on the ATDS issue and the litigation tactics leading up to the ruling).
As we reported last week, this N.L. v Credit One Bank case ended up a real disaster for the defense. The court rejected the “intended recipient” approach to the TCPA’s “called party” definition–i.e. the only one that actually makes sense–and allowed a jury to hammer a Defendant for merely calling a number provided by its customer.
I have said over and over again that the rule allowing personal liability against officers and employees for TCPA violations committed by the companies they work for is one of the most unfair rules in American jurisprudence. Indeed, I called it “Busch League” in my big interview with Anthony Paronich on Unprecedented that just dropped last week.
When it comes to TCPA class action lawyers they don’t come more dangerous than Anthony Paronich. The guy is absolutely prolific and when he gets a hold of a company he is notorious for refusing to let go–even when substantial evidence suggests the case may not hold water.
Liability arising out of calls to reassigned numbers presents one of the biggest challenges to TCPA compliance. Despite the availability of numerous private scrub services aimed at determining whether a number has been reassigned, there still exists no surefire method of knowing whether and exactly when a cellular telephone number has been reassigned.
The Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission demanded that gateway providers allowing COVID-19 pandemic-related scam robocalls into the United States cut off this traffic or face serious consequences.
For years, it seems, every other media segment had something to do with robocalls. Indeed, I famously joined an NPR segment on Christmas Eve to discuss robocalls and the need for clarity surrounding the federal laws and regulations addressing their usage.
Ad fraud can have a serious impact on any business. Not only can ad fraud eat your budget and water down ROI, it can also suck up a lot of time, causing your business to incur hefty opportunity costs along the way.
Emerging from the discussions at COMPLY were five themes that are defining the compliance industry's collective strategic focus, shaping policy, and propelling innovation. Hear from industry experts below including Fifth Third Bank, CFPB, Attorney General Office of PA, New York Life, FTC, Shareablee, State of NJ Division of Consumer Affairs, Barclays, Mastercard, Attorney General Office of NY, Ascent RegTech and PerformLine as they share critical insights that every compliance professional should know.
Last month the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Enforcement Bureau (EB) informed parties interested in serving as the single consortium that conducts private-led efforts to trace back the origin of suspected unlawful robocalls that they had to provide Letters of Intent to the EB by May 21, 2020. The establishment of the consortium is a requirement under Section 13(d) of the Pallone-Thune TRACED Act.
Well folks, our coverage of the HUGE SCOTUS review of the TCPA continues today. Of course we famously live blogged the oral argument earlier this month, then followed up with definitive analysis and an incredible round-table podcast breaking it down (including analysis from one of Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg’s former law clerk’s- Ben Beaton, co-head of SPB’s Appellate Team.) And now we have EXPERT analysis from Constitutional Law Professor Garret Epps of the University of Baltimore.
As TCPAWorld is well aware, the 9th Circuit’s Marks decision broadly defines what constitutes an ATDS under the TCPA. And, of course, this decision has led plaintiffs to seek out various ways to bring their claims in California (and elsewhere within the Circuit) in order to take advantage of that broad ruling. However, the Court’s decision in Laguardia v. Designer Brands, Case No.: 19cv1568 JM(BLM), 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88142 (S.D. Cal. May 7, 2020), demonstrates that those deliberate tactics are not beyond reproach.
The latest example is particularly painful because it involved two notorious TCPA repeat players—Craig Cunningham and Andrew Perrong— adding another feather to their already well-adorned caps. And adding salt to the wound, the Defendant’s critical position on the absence of a cause of action under CFR 64.1200(d) was rejected for the first time in Utah. Trainwreck.
Washington, DC (STL.News) The Federal Trade Commission has charged a payday lending enterprise with deceptively overcharging consumers millions of dollars and withdrawing money repeatedly from consumers’ bank accounts without their permission. A federal court has entered a temporary restraining order halting the operation and freezing the defendants’ assets, at the FTC’s request.
Who decides what’s a worthwhile education?
That’s a question that has defined the fight over charter schools, homeschooling and education vouchers, and now there’s a new front in the battle: privately owned schools that teach useful skills to adults.
On May 13, 2020, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against American Future Systems, Inc. (“AFS”), a Pennsylvania-based telemarketing company, and its alleged co-conspirator, International Credit Recovery, Inc. (“ICR”) (AFS and ICR, collectively, “Defendants”), for conspiring to bilk businesses into paying for publications that they never ordered.
Well the telecom world continues to shift from an environment where carriers are expected to faithfully connect every call to one in which they are expected to continuously monitor their network traffic to assure that spammers and scammers aren’t afforded access to the U.S. market.
Despite the myriad issues that businesses now face with the Covid-19 pandemic, the California State Attorney General remains committed to the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”) enforcement date of July 1, 2020. As such, businesses that have not already done so should add CCPA compliance to their immediate to-do lists. One area of compliance that requires attention is online privacy policies that include CCPA-mandated provisions (“CCPA Privacy Policies”).
What is behavioral data really? And where does it stand in relation to the FCRA? In this recent ruling out of the Central District of California, Tailford v. Experian Info. Sols., Inc., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 84658, the putative class of plaintiffs defined behavioral data as “non-traditional consumer data such as household income and purchase history,” and argued that Experian, as a consumer reporting agency (“CRA”) is required to disclose all such data IF it “might be” furnished in a consumer credit report.
I’ve said it once, I’ll say it again–the FTC is not messing around when it comes to potentially false/misleading COVID/PPP/CARES claims or related scams.
If you’re buying or selling leads these days there’s already a lot to keep in mind these days. From claims of bogus lead traffic to(allegedly) invented consents, TCPA traps for the unwary seem to lurk around every corner.
The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit recently upended the legal landscape governing fax marketing by issuing a decision which held that a market research-related fax survey is an advertisement for purposes of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”).
What are the implications of the Third Circuit’s fax survey decision?
An energy supplier that is a defendant in a class action for alleged Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) has filed a counterclaim against a third-party leads generator, alleging that the TCPA violations came about because they expressly disregarded compliance instructions and then falsified documentation to cover up their misdeeds.
Well its a new week so there’s a new Coronavirus bill floating around–this time a House-drafted bill that affords $3 trillion in relief to consumers and businesses impacted by COVID 19. (A trillion here, a trillion there–sooner or later it starts to add up.)