Washington Report

Advocacy Updates from Washington D.C.

FCC’s New Rule on Robocalls and Spam Text

On June 18, The Federal Communications Commission adopted a rule giving telephone companies wider latitude in preventing robocalls and spam text messages to consumers on both landline and wireless phones.

Under the new rule, phone carriers can block robocalls and automated text messages if requested by consumers. The move clarifies the agency’s interpretation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) a 1991 consumer protection law that banned telemarketers from making cold calls to consumers.

The rule also expands consumers’ ability to opt out of a marketer’s calls.

Under the existing rules, telemarketers need consent before targeting consumers’ wireless phones for nonemergency calls that are autodialed or prerecorded. They also need consent before targeting landline customers with prerecorded telemarketing calls.

The new rule would require companies to allow consumers to revoke that consent more easily than they can now. Also, if a number has changed hands, companies only get one chance to stop calling the new user before facing penalties.

NAR will work to educate our members on the updated telemarketing rules.

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