Wednesday, July 9, 2008
By Dinesh Ravishanker
Most CallFire.com users are not required to access the National Do Not Call Registry, and thus may access CallFire.com as an Exempt Organization, if one or more of the following is true:
- Your organization is not subject to either the FTC’s or the FCC’s jurisdiction. For example, a non-profit charitable organization may be an Exempt Organization, assuming, of course, that it is truly a non-profit. Entities that have been granted tax exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code are not necessarily Exempt Organizations for purposes of the National Do Not Call Registry. See, e.g., FTC v. National Consumer Council, Inc., and FTC v. Debt Management Foundation Services, Inc. There, the FTC successfully challenged the status of a purported nonprofit organization whose role in fact was simply to generate leads for other firms which then charged consumers thousands of dollars in fees for their services.
- Your organization does not engage in any "telemarketing" or “telephone solicitation” activities, as defined by the FTC and FCC, respectively. For example, survey calls and political polling calls are not covered by the definition of “telemarketing” or “telephone solicitations.” An organization that places ONLY these types of calls may be an Exempt Organization.
- Your organization qualifies for one or more of the specific exemptions contained in the FTC's and FCC's rules, such as:
a. you only call to solicit charitable contributions; or
b. you only call consumers with whom you have an established business relationship; or
c. you only call consumers from whom you have received written permission to call; or
d. you only make business-to-business calls.
If you are a for-profit telemarketer, you are NOT an Exempt Organization.
Whether your organization is exempt is a decision that requires an understanding of the FTC’s and FCC’s requirements, as well as your specific business practices. Therefore, whether you should subscribe as an Exempt Organization is a decision you must make. In making this decision, you may wish to consult with an attorney.
You may wish to consider the following materials when deciding whether to subscribe to the National Do Not Call Registry as an Exempt Organization:
- The FTC Act at 15 U.S.C. §§ 41-58 and related case law.
- The Communications Act at 47 U.S.C. §§ 151-757 and related case law.
- The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) at 47 USC §227 and related case law.
- The Telemarketing and Consumer Fraud Abuse Prevention Act at 15 U.S.C. §§ 6101-6108.
- The Do Not Call Implementation Act at P.L.108-10, 117 Stat. 557, and related case law.
- The Telemarketing Sales Rule at 16 C.F.R. § 310 and related Agency statements and case law.
- The FCC’s rules implementing the TCPA at 47 C.F.R. § 64.1200 and related Agency statements.