Pennsylvania ‘Do Not Call’ List
About PA State DNC List – https://www.attorneygeneral.gov/protect-yourself/do-not-call-list/
Register on PA DNC List – https://www.attorneygeneral.gov/protect-yourself/do-not-call-list/dnc-enrollment/
In addition to the National Do Not Call registry, Pennsylvania also maintains a state Do Not Call List.
Unwanted telemarketing calls constantly disrupt your privacy and can be a huge nuisance. In 2002, Pennsylvania residents were granted the chance to prevent such calls by enrolling in the Do Not Call list. Remarkably, within a two-week period that year, one million citizens registered, and since then, millions more have joined the list in subsequent years.
The Pennsylvania Do Not Call list is a free service that allows Pennsylvania residents to register their home and mobile phone numbers to avoid telemarketing calls. The list is overseen by the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General and updated quarterly. Telemarketers are required to purchase the list and remove the registered numbers from their calling lists within 30 days. Each violation of the law carries a civil penalty of up to $3,000.
Some key features of Pennsylvania’s State DNC List:
How can you register your phone number on the Pennsylvania Do Not Call List?
Office of Attorney General
Bureau of Consumer Protection
Do Not Call List
Strawberry Square, 15th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17120
To file a complaint about calls violating Pennsylvania’s DNC with the Attorney General’s office, you can visit their website at: https://www.attorneygeneral.gov/submit-a-complaint/not-call-verification/
You’ll first be asked to verify that your phone number is listed on PA’s state DNC list.
How long does it take for the calls to stop after I register on Pennsylvania’s state DNC List?
The Do Not Call list in Pennsylvania is updated on a quarterly basis. Telemarketers acquire the updated Do Not Call list every quarter and are required to remove the names and numbers listed within 30 days. This process ensures that telemarketers stay compliant by excluding the registered individuals and businesses from their own call lists.
|If you register before:||Telemarketers must stop calling you from:|
|September 15||November 1|
|December 15||February 1|
|March 15||May 1|
|June 15||August 1|
So if you register on September 15, your phone number would appear in the state DNC list published on October 1, and all telemarketers would be required to stop calling you after 30 days, i.e. from November 1.
But if you register on September 16, your phone number would appear in the list published on January 1, and telemarketers would be required to stop calling you starting February 1.
These dates would be crucial to decide whether any calls you receive within the next few weeks or months after registering on the state DNC list violate the Pennsylvania law.
Do I need to register on Pennsylvania’s State Do Not Call List if I am already registered on the National DNC?
Numerous consumers who have registered with the National Do Not Call list also seek the added safeguard of being included in their respective state’s Do Not Call list. While the national list is enforced by the Federal Trade Commission, the enforcement of the Pennsylvania list falls under the jurisdiction of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. Consumers have the option to enjoy the benefits of being on both the federal and Pennsylvania Do Not Call lists, completely free of charge.
Pennsylvania’s 1996 Telemarketer Registration Act (TRA) imposes several restrictions on the telemarketers. TRA:
Do all telemarketing calls stop after I register on the Do Not Call lists?
The Do Not Call List generally serves as an effective measure against the majority of telemarketing calls. However, it is important to note that there are exceptions, which include:
These exceptions allow certain types of calls to be made despite the individual’s registration on the Do Not Call List.
Here are the steps to register your phone number on the National Do Not Call (DNC) list:
1. Go to the official website of the National Do Not Call Registry at https://www.donotcall.gov/.
2. On the homepage, locate and click on the “Register” or “Register Your Phone” button. This will redirect you to the registration page.
3. Enter the phone number you want to register. You can register both landline and mobile numbers.
4. Provide your email address. This is required for registration confirmation.
5. Complete the verification process, which may involve confirming your email address by clicking on a link sent to your provided email.
6. After verification, you will receive a confirmation message stating that your phone number has been successfully registered on the National Do Not Call list.
Please be aware that registering on the National Do Not Call list is an effective step towards reducing unwanted telemarketing calls, but it may not entirely eliminate all calls. Certain organizations are exempt from the Do Not Call rules, including political organizations, charities, and companies with whom you have an established business relationship. Additionally, you may still receive calls from organizations to which you have previously given consent to contact you.
For additional information or to manage your registration, please visit the National Do Not Call Registry website mentioned earlier. You can also contact their toll-free number at 1-888-382-1222 using the phone number you wish to register.
How does the TCPA protect consumers from unwanted telemarketing calls?
The TCPA (Telephone Consumer Protection Act) is a federal U.S. law that aims to protect consumers from unwanted telemarketing calls. It establishes certain regulations and restrictions on telemarketers and sets forth provisions to safeguard consumer privacy. Here’s how the TCPA protects consumers:
1. Restrictions on Automated Calls: The TCPA prohibits most automated or prerecorded calls, commonly known as robocalls, to consumers’ residential landline phones without their prior consent. This restriction also applies to cell phones, unless the consumer has given express consent.
2. National Do Not Call Registry: The TCPA created the National Do Not Call Registry, which allows consumers to register their phone numbers to opt out of telemarketing calls. Telemarketers are generally prohibited from calling phone numbers listed on the Do Not Call Registry, unless the consumer has given prior consent or there are specific exemptions.
3. Consent Requirements: The TCPA mandates that telemarketers must obtain the consumer’s express written consent before making automated or prerecorded calls to their cell phones for marketing purposes. For landline phones, consent can be oral or written.
4. Caller Identification: Telemarketers are required by the TCPA to display accurate caller identification information, including the name and phone number of the company or individual making the call. Spoofing, which involves falsifying caller ID information, is generally prohibited.
5. Opt-Out Mechanism: The TCPA mandates that telemarketers must provide an easy and immediate way for consumers to opt out of receiving future telemarketing calls. This usually involves providing an automated opt-out mechanism during the call.
6. Enforcement and Remedies: The TCPA provides consumers with the right to sue telemarketers who violate its provisions. Consumers can seek damages for actual losses or receive compensation up to $500 per violation (which can be increased to $1,500 per violation for willful violations). Additionally, government agencies such as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) can enforce TCPA violations and impose penalties on violators.
It’s important to note that the TCPA has undergone updates and revisions over the years, and its interpretation may vary based on court decisions and regulatory actions. Consumers are encouraged to familiarize themselves with their rights under the TCPA and report any violations to the appropriate authorities.
To fully utilize the protections offered by the TCPA, it is indeed crucial to document any telemarketing calls or text messages that violate the law. Keeping a record of important details such as the date, time, nature of the call, caller’s identity, and phone number can be invaluable evidence.
Pennsylvania Residents’ Complaints to the National Do Not Call Registry: A Closer Look
If you suspect that a telemarketer has violated the TCPA, you can choose from several options to take action:
1. Seek Legal Counsel: Consulting with an attorney who specializes in consumer protection is recommended. They can assess your situation, determine if a violation has occurred, and guide you through the legal process to seek compensation or other remedies. An attorney may help you recover $500 to $1500 for each call or text you received from the telemarketer who violated the TCPA.
2. File a Complaint with the FCC: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is responsible for enforcing the TCPA. You can file a complaint online through the FCC’s Consumer Complaint Center (https://consumercomplaints.fcc.gov/) or contact them directly by phone or mail. Include detailed information about the violations, such as dates, times, caller information, and any supporting evidence.
3. File a Complaint with the FTC: The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also plays a role in TCPA enforcement. You can submit a complaint through the FTC’s Complaint Assistant (https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/). Provide as much information as possible about the violations and any evidence you have collected.
By taking these actions, you can raise awareness of TCPA violations and contribute to the enforcement of the regulations. You can force telemarketers to abide by the laws and stop annoying consumers without their consent. Do remember to keep records of relevant information, such as dates, times, caller details, screenshots of call logs, and any communication records, as evidence to support your claim.
The Pennsylvania state law does not allow the consumers to sue telemarketers for calling in violation of the state DNC list. Pennsylvania consumers are required to report the violations to the Attorney General’s office to investigate and pursue legal action against the violators. The TCPA, however, provides a private right of action to consumers. Thus consumers can sue telemarketers placing calls in violation of the TCPA individually and as a class. This continues to serve as a powerful tool for the public to fight against the telemarketers.
Pennsylvania residents can leverage the provisions of the TCPA to effectively address unwanted telemarketing calls and potentially seek compensation. However, due to the complexities involved in understanding the law and its practical application, it is advisable to consult with a legal expert if you suspect your privacy rights have been violated. They can provide guidance tailored to your specific situation.
It’s important to acknowledge that while the TCPA establishes statutory damages for each call in violation, the successful recovery of these amounts is not guaranteed. The feasibility of obtaining the penalty largely depends on the financial circumstances of the violator and their ability to satisfy the judgment. Nevertheless, the TCPA empowers consumers with robust remedies to combat unwanted calls and provides a legal framework for addressing privacy infringements.