Relentless robocalls might be illegal

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Robocalls are illegal without written consent, which means telling a company to stop, should make them permanently go away. But often times they continue to call, and many people don’t realize, that company might be breaking the law.

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act allows you to tell businesses and telemarketers to stop calling and texting your mobile device, if they don’t, you can bring them to court. Under the TCPA, repeated robocalls may qualify as harassment.

Gloucester resident Gregory Sweatt told 22News he didn’t know consumers had those rights. “I didn’t know there was a law that existed that would allow you to do that. You know, I think I’ve told them to stop calling me but they still call you,” he said.

A Texas woman won nearly $230,000 after suing Time Warner Cable Inc. for calling her 153 times after she had told them to stop.  Chicopee resident Jessica Hines told 22News she can relate. “They call maybe once or twice a week, and I tell them all of the time not to call me anymore, but they still do,” she said.

Richard Lohmeyer of West Springfield said he barely answers calls from numbers he doesn’t know because he assumes it’ll be a robocall. “Well it’s irritating because you’re doing something, and you’ve got to stop and look at your call waiting or caller ID and find out who they are, most of the time I just ignore them,” he said.

Here’s what you need to know: If calls continue after a name removal request, you can sue for $500 in damages for each violation. States can initiate civil action suits against companies for their citizens. In the past, the FCC has directly penalized violating companies

If you’re on a “do not call list,” a company is required to honor that indefinitely.

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