Persistent calls from insurance companies, credit cards, etc can be a woeful experience which is why most people get their phone numbers enlisted in the Do-not-call registry. This registry comes under many of the regulations introduced in The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991. If your business includes making calls to then you will have to maintain a do not call list and also understanding which clients do not wish to receive calls from you. You are responsible for checking which people or the current owners of the phone numbers have enlisted their names and whether they are also using the same.
Under the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) it is illegal to call cell phones for telemarketing. According to FCC regulations, telemarketers are barred from using automated callers to call people on their cell phone. Therefore, most consumers do not have to get their cell phone numbers registered for these calls. But these rules do not stop charitable organizations; pollsters and researchers from calling the cell phones manually.
There are also a host of compliance factors that you should keep in mind before actually asking your employees to dial the numbers. Or a small mistake can actually cost you thousands of dollars or even millions if you are not careful.
- Registry: The Do-not-call registry is quite vast and the list rolls into more than 300,000,000 and more people who refuse to accept any calls while having their lunch or supper. This national registry should technically be consulted before making any of the manual calls to the people on their cell phones.
- Prohibition: Six states in the United States do not allow telemarketers to call the people on wireless phones.
- Penalty: Just as the list of the people registered on the do-not-call list rolls on, so does the amount of penalty for the do not call compliance. Companies have been known to pay more than $40,000 for violations. People resort to social media and complaints to the registry if they are disturbed without consent. The figure could even run into millions if you are not careful. So, be alert before making the next call.
- Holidays: Calls should not be made on state holidays and the state holidays differ from one state to another. For instance, in Utah, you cannot call anyone on 24th July because the day is Pioneer Day. Similarly, every state has its own list of holidays which the telemarketing companies have to follow tediously to avoid a compliance issue.
- State laws: Not just holidays, each state has its own set of rules and regulations and any company calling people against the same will be inviting trouble. In Kentucky, for instance, no calls can be made before 10 AM in the morning. In most states, calls are prohibited at night. So, there is a strict set of timing between which people can be called if they are not listed on the do not call registry.
- Local time: The call curfew is actually based on the local time of the customer whom you are calling rather than the telemarketer and his location. The company has to keep in mind the state call curfew as well as the local time of the customer.
- Liability: Most companies have outsourced the telemarketing job to other companies in other countries. Technically, they have to follow the timings but in case there is a violation from the outsourced company the mother company has no option to cough up the penalty amount. This can be a bit tricky because even though you are trying to save money through outsourcing you can actually get into trouble and end up paying more money for no fault of your own.
- Documents necessary: In case there is compliance and an investigation then certain documents will be needed such as callers’ details, documents, phone records, and even the telemarketing log. So, every bit of these details has to be maintained on a daily basis and produced when necessary for the investigation. This is because the company has to prove that it has not violated the compliance. There is a fair bit of training involved for the employees as well.
- Different states and their rules: The do-not-call compliance list is not the same in all of the 50 states. Every state has its own set of rules and the company has to abide by it. Almost 37 states need telemarketing registrations for compliance to be kept in place.
- The scrub list: There is a grace period of 31 days which is even less for the wireless numbers. In the case of top companies, the scrubbing list if of not more than 7 days.
They do not call compliance can be very harmful to the reputation and finance of any company. So, most of the employees take work very seriously. The idea is not to disturb people but reach across to people who fit the requirement of the company for the sale of their products.