We have sued creditors when their debt collectors call our clients’ cell phones in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) law.
Not only do the debt collectors hate this but the creditors go crazy when they get sued.
One reason debt collectors and creditors — such as credit card companies — hate this law is that the damages are either $500 or $1500 per call to your cell phone. We have had these cases where the damages reached six figures.
The other reason the credit card or car finance companies hate this is they say “Well, we didn’t call you so you can’t sue us. You can only sue our debt collectors.”
This is wrong and has been known to be wrong for a number of years. A creditor is on the hook for what it collector does when the TCPA is violated.
But sometimes these creditors still make this argument.
However, as noted by Plaintiff, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) has ruled that a creditor is responsible for calls made on its behalf. In In re Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, 23 FCC Rcd. 559 ¶ 10 (Jan. 4, 2008) (“2008 TCPA Order”), the FCC stated that:
Similarly, a creditor on whose behalf an autodialed or prerecorded message call is made to a wireless number bears the responsibility for any violation of the Commission’s rules. Calls placed by a third party collector on behalf of that creditor are treated as if the creditor placed the call.
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