Michigan Considers Mini-TCPA Law

TCPA Connect

Following in the footsteps of Florida, Oklahoma and Washington, Michigan is considering its own state analogue of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).

The Michigan Telephone Solicitation Act would prohibit the use of an automatic dialing and announcing device (ADAD)—defined to include any device or system of devices that is used, whether alone or in conjunction with other equipment, for the purpose of automatically selecting or dialing telephone numbers—for a telephone solicitation that otherwise violates the statute, or unless the list of numbers that the ADAD selects from excludes the telephone numbers of those on the federal Do Not Call Registry and “vulnerable individuals,” those age 75 years and up, or those possessing a disability.

The proposed law includes exemptions for solicitations made with express, verifiable authorization; calls to existing customers; calls made by a representative of an entity utilizing an emergency telephone number; and calls made by school or educational facilities.

House Bill 6307 would also establish time restrictions, limiting all calls to between the hours of 9 a.m. and 8 p.m. absent express, verifiable authorization from the recipient. Callers would be required to state their full first and last name as well as the full name, address and telephone number of the organization at the beginning of the call.

Pursuant to the measure, companies would need to keep records related to telephone solicitations for four years and would be prohibited from using caller ID blocking as well as restricting, circumventing or otherwise interfering with a subscriber’s caller ID service. A telephone solicitation using a recorded message would not be permissible.

Violations of the proposed law could result in civil penalties of $25,000 per violation, $75,000 per violation if the call recipient is a vulnerable individual, and $100,000 per each persistent and knowing violation directed at a vulnerable individual in actions brought by the state attorney general.

In addition, HB 6307 provides for a private right of action with a recovery of $1,000 per violation, plus fees if the plaintiff has suffered a “loss,” a term not defined by the proposed law.

To read HB 6307, click here.

Why it matters: The number of states considering mini-TCPA laws continues to proliferate, with Michigan joining a list that includes Florida, Oklahoma and Washington. Companies should keep a close eye on the latest entry on the list, as Michigan’s provisions include a host of new requirements and the potential for significant penalties.

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