Do Not Call rules are not for breaking
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has fined the Mortgage Investors Corporation a whopping $7.5 million for violating Do Not Call laws, the largest fines levied against any company for violating these laws as they pursued business with U.S. servicemembers. In the ten years of the Do Not Call registry’s existence, the FTC has been very harsh in monitoring and penalizing any individual or company who violates the Do Not Call provisions Telemarketing Sales Rule.
The FTC refers to the Mortgage Investors Corporation as one of America’s leading refinancers of home loans for veterans, and is accusing the company of calling individuals listed on the Do Not Call registry and refusing to remove individuals from their company call list upon demand, and to top it all off, the terms of available loan products were allegedly misstated by the company’s telemarketers.
“Since the advent of Do Not Call, the FTC has been aggressive in cracking down on violators and preventing annoying, illegal calls to consumers,” said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez. “Today’s settlements leave no doubt that DNC enforcement remains a top priority.”
Not just violating the Do Not Call list
Not only is this the largest fine resulting from Do Not Call absuses, the case is also the first action the FTC has brought under the Mortgage Acts and Practices advertising rule, under which the FTC may collect civil penalties for deceptive mortgage ads.
There are currently 221 million Americans on the Do Not Call list and businesses must take this list into account when developing their marketing strategy, particularly cold calls, but even calls made to existing clients. All business individuals and owners should review the full list of Do Not Call rules and how any phone number can be registered and added to the Do Not Call list.