Electronic communications with customers and other businesses.
ABA opposes any provisions in law or regulation that would restrict legitimate electronic communications—whether by e-mail, facsimile, or telephone—between banks and their customers or other businesses.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was passed in 1991, a time when dial up modems were cutting edge and cellular phones were rare, yet it remains the law and is a source of increasing litigation risk. The law is out of step with the reality of current telecommunications and the increasing public preference for, and reliance on, cellular service and the associated technological advances that accompany it to conduct their personal and business relationships.
The TCPA governs telemarketing calls and commercial faxes to residences and businesses. In addition, the law governs calls or text messages to mobile phone lines made with “automated telephone dialing systems” (autodialers) and/or prerecorded messages. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is charged with interpreting and enforcing the TCPA.
The TCPA includes a private right of action; recipients of calls that violate the autodialer rule can recover damages of $500 per call, or $1,500 per call if the violations are found to be willful. Increasingly, plaintiffs’ lawyers are filing class action lawsuits for calls or texts made to cellular phones using an autodialer. ABA supports amendment of the TCPA and/or its implementing regulations.