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One Way to Get Rid of Telemarketers

This article was written by in Consumer. 7 comments.


Without a landline phone, I don’t receive many calls from telemarketers. André-Tascha Lammé from Sacramento was having a problem with mortgage lenders, and decided to take care of the problem through the courts.

So far, Lammé has won $6,000 in judgments against telemarketers in three cases. He’s not a lawyer, but by filing in small claims court, he’s spent no more than $100 in court fees and scarcely more than an hour of his time on any case. Now he wants you to do it, too.

angry on the phoneEach violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, such as a call from a telemarketer after you’ve told the company not to call you, can fetch a penalty of $500, payable to the unlucky phone call recipient. And it turns out it’s not difficult to file these claims, although it might take a long time before one sees the payments.

The details are found on a website founded by Lammé: KillTheCalls.com. He provides detailed instructions for suing telemarketers as well as a call sheet which tells you exactly what to do when a telemarketer calls to fully take advantage of the law on the consumer’s side. Once you’re ready, this list of small claims courts across the country is a good starting point.

You could try adding your phone numbers to the National Do Not Call List to stop the calls before they occur. I’m not completely convinced that willingly providing your phone number to the government doesn’t put that information on an other list of valid phone numbers for political calls, which are exempt from the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

Updated June 17, 2014 and originally published February 14, 2007. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Sun

I used to get a lot of calls (around 7:00 pm) for telemarketing, but it’s true that after I registered at Do Not Call, there’s almost no such call any more. Most of the calls I got now are from Credit card companies and my mortgage company which are exempted from the Do Not Call because I have business with them so they can still call me. But the Do Not Call does work and I almost didn’t get any extra political calls because of the registration.

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avatar mapgirl

I have an unlisted number and due to the crappy weather, I got a call from the local FOP for a donation. I wonder how the hell he knew my name?!?!

Telemarketer/charitable donation solicitor/survey taker. It’s all the same to me. WASTE OF TIME.

I do keep a landline around for broadband and 911 access. I don’t trust VoIP for emergency calls.

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avatar Kelly

That is a great idea! We have listed with Do Not Call but still get the calls, this is what we’ve done to combat the problem.

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avatar William Powell

Don’t delete calls from our family members.

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avatar clyde

Instead of a “Do Not Call List” where folks have to register not to be called by telemarketers, why don’t we have a “Please Call List” where folks who want to be called can register. Otherwise, nobody gets called. Why do we have to register every five years when we don’t want to be called?

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,465 (Platinum)

Clyde: Not a bad idea. I think a “Please Call List” would be blank, or at least, very small.

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avatar CW

I think we should hit the telemarketers where it hurts, when setting up their boiler rooms. I contacted my local congressperson and proposed that the suppliers of phone lines, equipment, etc for boiler rooms must first have several things from the company/person/entity that wants a boiler room. First, the entity must have an IRS tax number, be licensed to do business in the state of the boiler room’s physical locations, sign an agreement with the supplier that they will not use the boiler room for criminal purposes such as ID theft, fraud, etc or violate any FCC regulations, and last they must post a bond for a hefty amount say one million to ten million that is forfeited if they violate their written agreement. I called one of the suppliers of a boiler room, which I located through a private reverse phone service and asked them if they took responsibility for criminal activity on their equipment/lines and they said to get a subpoena. So let’s hit these crooks where it hurts. Also you should beware that they people who set up and use boiler rooms can be dangerous, as they have no ethics or morals. They could be fronts for ID theft, home invasion robberies, etc. So do not give out your address to these folks, hang up. Anyone who does not follow FCC regulations is probably a crook. Ethical businesses follow the rules and these are the people you should do business with. Don’t give a telemarketer a chance. Hang up. and if they violate FCC rules, file a complaint with the FCC, the FTC and you local state attorney general. Let’s grind the telemarketing business to a halt and bury it. The industry does not regulate itself very well and because of that and phone line and equipment suppliers don’t care either, I think it is time to end this as an industry. If any one likes the above proposed legislation, contact your local congressperson and spread the word. Enough irate consumers and something might actually get done.

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