Even though the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991 is in force currently, it has not succeeded in eliminating the annoyance faced by consumers due to unsolicited phone calls made using automated equipment.
Recently, U.S. senators John Thune (R-S.D.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) have written to the CTIA – The Wireless Association, a lobby group that represents carriers AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile, urging them to put an end to robocalls and texts. They suggest creating a database of phone numbers that have been reassigned from one customer to another.
In a letter addressed to the CTIA President and CEO Meredith Baker, the senators say that mobile phones are now ubiquitous and that compliance with the TCPA is necessary. The letter also says, among other things, ” While the law has worked to successfully block countless unwanted calls, consumer complaints related to the TCPA remain among the most frequently received by the Federal Trade Commission and Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Consumers have made it clear they do not want their lives disrupted by calls and texts they have not consented to receive. ”
The senators have also written that they would like to know how the industry would go about creating the database and also how companies could provide access to callers such that they could determine whether a number is still assigned to its original owner.
The question of cost has also been raised by them as they would like to know if the carriers can also cover costs of creating and maintaining the database through charging the calling parties a fee for the access. The senators feel that creating a database of this kind could help the consumer protection guidelines of the TCPA.
The other side
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has allowed carriers to provide their customers with the option of blocking; however, this is fraught with lack of clarity as well as the question whether carriers have the proper authority to allow for such an action.
In the meantime, it is the consumers that continue to face the harassment through unsolicited phone communication. Eventually, it is up to the consumer to choose whether or not to seek out a solution to the situation.
Legal Rights Advocates, PLLC is a law firm that specializes in helping clients who are being harassed by calls made using automated calling equipment. Our team of attorneys, over the years, has helped countless clients get protections from debt collection practices that are deemed as unlawful and illegal under the FDCPA and TCPA laws.
If you are a consumer interested in learning more about how to safeguard yourself better with FDCPA and TCPA laws, call us at (855) 254-7841 for immediate assistance.