While not as common as it used to be, telephone solicitors and telemarketers are an unwelcome nuisance on your phone. Calls encouraging a purchase, rental, or investment in something; encouraging participation in a contest, sweepstakes, raffle, lottery; or soliciting charitable donations can take up time keeping you from doing something you’d rather be doing (which is likely almost anything).
There are two do-not-call lists. One is the national do-not-call registry located here or you can call 888.382.1222 to add your telephone number. If a telemarketer calls you when you are on that list, they are likely in violation of state and federal law. Additionally, each company engaging in telemarketing must have their own company do-not-call list. If a telemarketer calls you, even if you are not on the national do-not-call list, if you inform them not to call you again they must honor that request within a reasonable time, not to exceed 30 days.
Telemarketers must have procedures to ensure that they are abiding by the federal do-not-call registry and the requirement that they have their own do-not-call registry. There are also restrictions about when the telemarketer can call you and what exactly the telephone solicitor can say to you if you do choose to speak with them.
North Carolina’s state law protections against phone solicitations and telemarketers are even stronger than the TCPA. North Carolina provides for a civil penalty of $500 for the first violation, $1000 for the second violation, and $5000 for every violation thereafter. There are some exceptions to these laws, usually dealing with a tax exempt organization, political campaigns or polling but even those parties cannot make a solicitation while they contact you.
If you are being harassed by phone calls encouraging a purchase, rental, investment, sweepstakes, raffle, lottery, or charitable donation, we may be able to assist you. It is important to keep a log of these calls, take screen shots of incoming calls and ask your phone company for your phone records. Maginnis Law takes these cases on a contingency basis and all initial consultations on telemarketing scams are free of charge.