Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”)
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) protects individuals against unwanted phone calls and text messages from both debt collectors and telemarketers. The TCPA prohibits calls using any automatic telephone dialing system or an artificial or prerecorded voice unless the company has the individual’s prior express consent to call. You can generally tell the difference between calls that are manually dialed from calls that are autodialed by whether there is a pause or music playing before the line is connected to a live person, or if there is no live person at all.
Even where an individual had previously agreed to be called by a given company, he or she can then withdraw this consent, and if the company continues to call it will be violating the law.
The TCPA also prohibits text messages and faxes sent without prior consent.