COMPLIANCE

Do Not Call Compliance and Laws


The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) gives people throughout the country the legal right to join the national Do Not Call (DNC) registry. Companies cannot legally place unsolicited telemarketing calls to anyone on the DNC registry.

Violations of DNC laws come with serious repercussions for companies, making DNC compliance very important. However, our team at PossibleNOW understands the challenges associated with following all Federal Trade Commission regulations.

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We provide solutions that make it easier for your business to adhere to all compliance regulations while still reaching potential customers to generate leads. Find out more about the laws associated with the Do Not Call Registry today by calling us at (800) 585-4888.



WHAT & WHY

What Is the National Do Not Call Registry, and Why Was It Created?

The National Do Not Call list acts as a registry for consumers who do not want to receive telemarketing calls. Consumers easily join the list just by adding their phone numbers. Everyone with a telephone number in the U.S. has the legal right to join this list.

The Federal Trade Commission set up the National DNC registry to help consumers avoid repeated and unwanted telephone communications.

    The TCPA provides additional protections to consumers around the country. This law went into effect in 1992. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) played a significant role in setting up these rules, which prevent companies from contacting people on DNC lists.

    Under the TCPA, businesses also face restrictions on:

  • Calling people between the hours of 9 p.m. and 8 a.m.
  • Sending consumers unsolicited fax messages
  • Refusing to share their name or other information after placing a call
  • Calling telephone numbers on the DNC list or otherwise violating the TCPA, which may lead to severe legal repercussions.

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COMPLIANCE LAWS

Do Not Call Compliance Laws

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To avoid penalties, businesses need to understand DNC regulations before they start placing telephone calls. Making telemarketing calls to individuals on the DNC list may cause legal issues for your company, risking financial penalties and reputation damage.

What Are the Rules for the Do Not Call List?

According to Federal Safe Harbor laws, businesses must download an up-to-date copy of the DNC registry every 31 days. However, the experts generally recommend that you download an updated version of the list every day.

New numbers get added to the list daily, making it very important to stay current to avoid penalties.

Note that the Do Not Call National Registry only records phone numbers. It does not contain any additional personal information about consumers. Businesses do not receive further information about potential clients when downloading the list.

Who Are Do Not Call Rules Intended to Protect?

The Do Not Call law seeks to offer protection to consumers. While some people solicit calls from businesses, many individuals prefer to limit their contact with telemarketers, sellers, and other companies.

This regulation provides protection for home phone lines and cell phones in many cases. However, DNC list exceptions do exist.

Does the DNC List Apply to Business-to-Business (B2B) Calls?

Generally, the DNC list only covers consumer phone numbers. Companies have the legal ability to place business-to-business calls without facing legal sanctions from the Federal Trade Commission.

We can help you review any restrictions on making a telemarketing call to another business if you feel unsure about these regulations.





ACCESSING

Accessing the National DNC Registry

Businesses must access the National DNC registry before calling consumer phone numbers to avoid legal penalties. Service providers and companies must look over telephone numbers on this list before trying to solicit consumers.

    What Can You Access on the National DNC Registry?

    The National Registry provides you with limited information about consumers. The DNC list does not provide information about a consumer's address or any additional personal information. In fact, the list only contains registered telephone numbers.

    How Can You Use Information on the DNC List?

    Keep in mind that businesses should only use phone numbers on the DNC list to avoid making unwanted telemarketing calls. Companies must certify that they only access the registry to prevent calls. Using the phone numbers on these calling lists for other purposes could result in legal repercussions.

COST

Cost of Accessing the National DNC Registry

Service providers can access data about phone numbers in five different area codes for free when they access the DNC registry. If you want to access additional telephone numbers, prepare to pay a fee for each subsequent area code.

Many businesses express surprise at the cost to get access to area codes across the nation on the DNC Registry. Your business may end up paying thousands of dollars to review restricted phone numbers.

How Do You Pay Your DNC Registry Fee?

You have two options to pay for access to the information on the Do Not Call registry. Companies pay either by credit card or electronic funds transfer (EFT).

If you pay by credit card, the website will attempt to process the payment right away. You can begin transferring data immediately if the credit card payment goes through.

EFT payments, on the other hand, take longer to process. Businesses often need to wait three days before EFT funds clear. Once the funds go through, you will get access to the data on the DNC registry. You cannot use checks or other payment methods to access the registry.

Expect to complete a new financial transaction each time you want to add a new area code or series of area codes to your exclusion database.



HOW

How to Use the National DNC Registry

Businesses access the DNC registry by visiting a website set up by the Federal Trade Commission. You need to set up an account before you can receive access to any phone numbers. During registration, you select the five area codes you can get for free.

You will also have the ability to purchase access to additional area code information for an appropriate fee. Once you register, you may log back in to download new data at any time. However, the Federal Trade Commission deletes accounts that do not have active subscriptions after 120 days without use.

You can prevent the permanent deletion of your account by setting up an active subscription or logging in before 120 days expire.

Who Can Access the National Registry?

Only specific organizations have the right to access the phone numbers included in the National DNC registry. The FTC limits access to:

Sellers

The government uses the term sellers to refer to any companies that:

  • Provide goods or services and sell these products or services in exchange for payment, often during a telemarketing call
  • Issue offers to provide goods or services
  • Make arrangements for others to supply products or services

Telemarketers

Telemarketing companies are those that place calls on behalf of sellers.

Service Providers

Service providers assist telemarketing companies. They provide access to lists of available phone numbers. In other situations, providers take telephone numbers off the lists that sellers use. Note that not all sellers face requirements to use the registry.

Sellers exempted from the FTC's rules still have the option to access the registry voluntarily. However, they must still provide certification information before viewing any telephone numbers on the DNC registry.


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INFORMATION

What Information Do You Provide to Access the Registry?

Before you access a consumer's number, you must check the DNC list. In order to access the list, your company must provide identifying information. Telemarketers and providers who work for clients provide information about those clients.

In addition to providing basic business information, you will need to enter your Subscription Account Number (SAN).






REMOVE

How Do Consumers Remove Numbers from the Do Not Call List?

Federal laws guarantee that consumer numbers remain on the Do Not Call registry indefinitely after people add them. The call registry does not have expiration dates for consumers. However, consumers have the option to remove their phone numbers from the list if they change their minds.

You will receive an updated list whenever you download a new copy from the Federal Trade Commission. Your new listing should include any new phone numbers from the area codes you access.


HOW OFTEN

How Often Should a Company Retrieve Numbers from the Do Not Call List?

We recommend that, as a business, you update your copy of the call registry every day to keep the most up-to-date information available.

Remaining aware of the numbers you can reach helps you avoid civil penalties. Note that you legally must refresh your call registry list every 31 days.





FACTS

Facts About Do Not Call Violations and Telemarketing Calls

The Federal Trade Commission responds harshly to violations of the Do Not Call registry. Making a telemarketing call to a person on the DNC list opens your company up to expensive fines.

These regulations apply if you operate as a telemarketer, service provider, or seller. Telemarketing rules and regulations help you keep track of the steps to take before making a call.

The FTC often acts on complaints that consumers make when they know who is calling their number after they have placed it on the Do Not Call registry. Consumers often message the FTC directly, though they may also reach out to the National Consumer Council.

  • Subscribe to the areas codes you plan to call
  • Access the relevant registry portions
  • Pay any applicable annual fee

Failure to follow these regulations as an authorized representative of a seller, telemarketer, or service provider will lead to legal complications.

You also face legal repercussions for calling someone with whom you have an established business relationship without checking the registry. Contact us to get more information about the federal laws that apply in this situation.

What If I Accidentally Call a Number on the Registry?

Mistakes happen. You have access to a safe harbor if you accidentally call someone on the Do Not Call registry. However, you must meet several requirements before reaching the safe harbor. Companies can take advantage of safe harbor protections if they can show that they:

  • Have written procedures that meet DNC regulations
  • Provide employees with training for these procedures
  • Monitor and require compliance from employees
  • Keep a list of DNC phone numbers

The company must also show that it looked at the DNC registry within 31 days of the accidental call. Make sure that you keep records showing the exact dates on which you downloaded and updated your restricted numbers list.

If your company meets all of the above requirements, you may be able to avoid a penalty for accidentally calling someone on the Do Not Call registry.

Can Someone Sue You for Do Not Call Violations?

You may face fines of up to $43,792 for making a telemarketing call to a consumer on the DNC list. Note that the government charges this fine per call, meaning that it stacks fines if you place multiple calls to people on the Do Not Call registry.

People in certain states have also begun filing lawsuits against companies that use robo-dialers and other means to place unwanted calls. Often, this requires them to work with a lawyer. Some companies have faced class-action lawsuits regarding DNC violations.

What Happens to Businesses That Don't Use the Registry?

Legally, you must sign up for and access the Do Not Call registry before placing a call as a service provider, telemarketer, or seller. Your company may face thousands of dollars in fines for working in these fields without accessing the DNC registry.

The FTC generally considers each call you make an individual violation in this situation, allowing the agency to add fines.

STATE-LEVEL

Learn About State-Level DNC Lists

Twelve states around the country maintain their own DNC lists in addition to the Federal Do Not Call registry. You may end up subject to Do Not Call violations by state, as these states have the legal right to set up their own requirements. They also have the right to fine companies that violate their laws.

You face additional regulations when placing calls to people living in the following states.

  • Colorado: Colorado updates its DNC list on a quarterly basis. Companies must download new versions of the list in January, April, July, October. Expect to pay fees of up to $500 to access the state's listing.
  • Florida: Florida also performs quarterly updates. You may pay quarterly fees of $30 to get all the numbers for a single area code or $100 for statewide information. Some companies make an annual $400 payment for statement access.
  • Indiana: Indiana uses the same schedule as Florida but charges more for phone number information. Expect to pay $750 to get Indiana's DNC list.
  • Louisiana: Louisiana varies the fees you pay because it allows you to share a subscription with multiple affiliates. Expect to pay from $800 to $1,700 for the call list.
  • Massachusetts: Massachusetts uses the January, April, July, October schedules to provide updates for their DNC list. You pay $1,100 to receive the list. If you want the information on CD, prepare to pay an extra $60.
  • Mississippi: Mississippi charges each company a flat $1,000 for access to the DNC information and releases new data every month.
  • Missouri: Missouri releases information on a quarterly basis. You pay $300 for statewide access every month or $1,200 as an annual fee. You may also pay for specific area codes.
  • Oklahoma: Expect to pay $150 every quarter to get DNC information from the state of Oklahoma.
  • Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania charges a flat $495 for access to DNC data. The state updates the information every quarter.
  • Tennessee: Tennessee provides monthly updates to the DNC lists and charges a fee of $500.
  • Texas: Your company can get quarterly updates from Texas, with a quarterly fee of $150.
  • Wyoming: Wyoming also uses quarterly rates. The state charges $465 a year to provide you with access to this information.


GET HELP

Get Help Avoiding DNC Registry Violations

You do not have to struggle to adhere to all Do Not Call registry regulations on your own. Our team at PossibleNow offers solutions that help your business avoid any FTC violations or fines regarding the DNC Registry. We developed our DNCSolution to meet the needs of clients in your situation.

We understand the benefits that come from adhering to all FTC and FCC Do Not Call regulations. Taking this step helps you avoid fines and also builds trust with your customers. For this reason, we provide high-volume scrubbing technology that works for:

  • State lists
  • Federal lists
  • Wireless lists
  • Company-specific lists
  • Outsourcing Federal DNC compliance services allows you to feel confident each time you make a call to a potential customer. We will help you review requirements whether you have an established business relationship with a consumer or if you want to reach someone for the first time.

    At PossibleNow, we also take care of Do Not Email, Do Not Text, and Do Not Mail compliance issues for clients around the country. Find out more about how we can help you legally handle every telemarketing transaction by calling us at (800) 585-4888.