The call may begin with a prerecorded voice saying something like, "You may be eligible to refinance your mortgage at a lower interest rate. Please press one to speak with a customer service associate." It's not just aggravating, it's illegal: When telemarketers and debt collectors contact your home phone without your express consent with unsolicited, prerecorded phone messages, they are usually breaking the law. It can also be illegal to make calls and/or send texts to cellphones without your express consent.
Thousands of people receive these unsolicited robo calls from telemarketers every day, including:
- Offers from debt-reduction services or credit cards with promised lower interest rates
- Sales pitches claiming a car warranty is about to expire and offering extended auto service contracts
- False claims you have won a vacation package or have been specially selected for another offer
- Suggestions that you have been pre-qualified to refinance your home
- Attempts to collect a debt
- Offers to convert your home to solar power
If you've received calls like these, you should know the law protects your rights. A federal law called the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) makes it illegal for telemarketers or businesses to send text messages or to call you on your home or cellphone with an auto-dialer using an artificial or pre-recorded voice unless you've explicitly consented to these calls.
If you have received such calls, you may be able to recover financial compensation for the unwanted calls. In fact, recipients of robo-calls may be eligible to receive up to $1,500 for each call or text.
So what should you do? If you receive one of these phone calls at home or on your cellphone, simply note the time and date of the call, the phone number that is calling you and, if possible, the name of the company that is calling you. If you receive a text message, save it.
Then, contact an attorney at Righetti • Glugoski, P.C., if you are interested in learning about your rights, obtaining compensation and stopping these harassing calls and texts. Please contact our firm for a free and private consultation. Call 415-983-0900 or 800-447-5549, or complete an online contact form to discuss your situation with our lawyers. Located in San Francisco, we work with clients throughout the entire state of California.