The National Do Not Call Registry (NDNCR) has undoubtedly been popular since its inception in 2003, but in the process, it has hampered telemarketers. The registry requires that lead lists be purged of names that are on the NDNCR; SalesLeads.TV maintains full compliance with these rules. But did you know that there are a number of exceptions to the NDNCR rules?

Here is a brief list of granted exceptions to the Do Not Call Rules:

  • The registry applies only to residences, not businesses
  • Political organizations
  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • Surveys
  • Companies that have an existing relationship with a person on the registry for up to 18 months following the last business transaction.
  • There is a 31-day waiting period in which a person on the registry can still receive phone calls
  • Bill collectors

For everyone else, it is imperative you use lead lists that are in full compliance with NDNCR. I strongly recommend that you do not try to circumvent the rules. As a cautionary tale, consider the case of Missouri vs Dove Foundation. The foundation, a non-profit opinion-polling organization, was accused and of violating Missouri’s Do Not Call Implementation Act in 2006 for allowing its client, Feature Films for Families, to market its products to households who had registered. The organization reached a settlement for $70,000 after over 300 complaints were received by the Missouri Attorney General.

People can complain to the Federal Communications Commission and to the Federal Trade Commission if they feel they are being abused. Complainers must provide specifics, such as the time of the phone call, the phone number called, the identity of the caller, the purpose of the call, and whether the call was exempt for any reason. The FTC has been criticized for not pursuing NDNRC claims.

For a company to receive the NDNRC list, it must first obtain a Subscription Account Number (SAN) for one or more area codes. A fee is charged unless the organization is exempt. The company then downloads the registered phone numbers. SalesLeads.TV purges its lists of any phone numbers downloaded in this way, unless the lead purchaser is exempt from the NDNRC. The FCC fine for illegal calls is $16,000 per call, so obviously it makes no sense to ignore this law. Recently, the FTC has issued Do Not Track guidelines to protect consumers from unauthorized use of their online data, an issue we will examine in a future blog.

Eric Bank