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FCC order clarifies TCPA opt-out rules

The Federal Communications Commission has announced its adoption of new rules to further protect consumers from unwanted robocalls and robotexts. The new rule will make it simpler for consumers to revoke consent, and requires that callers and texters implement requests in a timely manner.

The new rules require that robocallers and robotexters honor do-not-call and consent revocation requests within a reasonable time, not to exceed 10 business days from receipt. Last week’s action also codifies the Commission’s 2015 ruling that consumers can revoke consent under the TCPA through any reasonable means.
Under the ruling, consumers will be able to opt out of test messages using “stop,” “quit,” “end,” “revoke,” “opt out,” “cancel,” or “unsubscribe" via reply text message as a per se reasonable means to revoke consent.

The ruling also adds to the FCC rules the Commission’s 2012 ruling that clarified that a one-time text message confirming a consumer’s request that no further text messages be sent does not violate the TCPA as long as the confirmation text merely confirms the called party’s opt-out request and does not include any marketing information.

The Commission also seeks comment on whether the TCPA applies to robocalls and robotexts from wireless providers to their own subscribers and whether consumers should have the ability to revoke consent and stop such communications.

The order becomes effective 30 days after Federal Register publication (with some exceptions).

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