TCPA Litigators Have Tricks Up Their Sleeves (you better know what they are)
Have you heard of the large number of TCPA lawsuits being filed lately? Companies in all industries are being hit and it, sometimes after they have been tricked by litigants or TCPA lawyers. If you don’t want to be one of them, pay attention to these common tricks so that you can watch out and protect yourself.
#1 Listing a residential phone number as a business line
It happens all the time. Small business owners will use their home phone as their business number. Fine – except for when they register the number on the Do Not Call List. Remember that business numbers are fair game so while you may think you’re calling a business, you are actually violating the TCPA. Some people (and law firms) are getting rich off this trick so make sure to scrub your business leads too.
#2 Threaten to sue
A law firm may not have a case but by threatening to sue you, they could force an out of court settlement with you dishing out cash to the “injured” party. Before you settle, consult with a defense attorney.
#3 Call seeding
This is a crazy trick and involves someone signing up to be called by a company. However, when you leave a message they will call back from a different line, provide their information and then act like they got disconnected. When you call them back, you have violated the TCPA because they didn’t sign up to be called at that phone number. It’s dirty but it works. You can’t trust people. You have to scrub each number.
#4 Naming corporate officers or managers in a lawsuit
Everyone freaks out when they get sued and litigators know this. By naming people individually, they are threatening the corporation to settle, or else corporate officers could be drug through the mud. It’s a pressure tactic and a good defense lawyer can handle this one.
#5 Buying reassigned numbers
When you sign up for a new landline or buy a new cellphone service you are assigned a phone number. That phone number probably belonged to someone else before you. Some people purposefully secure numbers that were owned by someone else and on the DNC list. Then, they will try to get you to call them on the not so new number. Some litigants have multiple phones for this purpose – to trap and sue you.
#6 Letting the violations mount
The more frequently you violate the TCPA, the more you can be fined. Lawyers know this and will sometimes let the violations (number of times you call a number) mount before suing. Think about the lead that keeps making you call back, seeming interested but never closing. Have you run their number against the DNC list lately?
Don’t think that you could be tricked and sued by a TCPA litigator? Well, 150 other companies felt the same way before they were sued by one guy – Craig Cunningham. That’s right, one person has sued 150 different companies for violating the TCPA using some of the strategies listed above. The most recent decision was in May of 2019, so this is not old news. Cunningham has these tricks down to a science and he’s not alone, so you need to be careful.
What You Can Do
So, you know that TCPA litigators and their clients are willing to use dirty tricks to put you and your company in a spot where you could be sued. What can you do about it? For one, you need to be careful when buying lead lists and make sure that they are scrubbed – even business numbers. Scrub and first and scrub often. Then, keep an eye out for strange behavior and the tricks listed above. If you notice them, check the number against the DNC again.
You can order the best scrubbed lead lists from www.salesleads.tv by emailing John Fischer at firstname.lastname@example.org.