Collector - February 2016 - 42


IAP

ACA Files Joint Brief in D.C. Circuit Challenging TCPA Order
More than 25 other organizations have also filed briefs supporting ACA's TCPA lawsuit against the FCC.
By Karen Scheibe Eliason

I

n a joint legal brief filed Nov. 25, 2015,
ACA International and other petitioners
asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for
the D.C. Circuit to overturn the unlawful
provisions of the Federal Communications
Commission's July 2015 Declaratory Ruling
and Order on the Telephone Consumer
Protection Act.
The petitioners in the consolidated
case, ACA International, et al. v. Federal
Communications Commission and United
States, challenge the FCC's exercise of
regulatory authority to expand the scope and
reach of the TCPA in a way that Congress
never intended-leaving a law in place that
hurts legitimate, law-abiding business.
The joint brief highlights the reasons
why the FCC's TCPA order is unlawful,
and strongly rebukes the FCC's rationale
for its impermissibly vague and internally
inconsistent interpretations of the TCPA that
contradict the ordinary meaning, structure
and purpose of the statute, which lead to
absurd and unconstitutional results.
ACA and the other petitioners contest
three key aspects of the TCPA order:
* The FCC's interpretation of automated
telephone dialing system;
* The FCC's treatment of prior express
consent, including of reassigned
numbers; and
* The FCC's treatment of revocation of
consent.
ACA and the other petitioners argue that:
"The order misinterprets 'ATDS' to consider
potential rather than present ability,
erases the random-or-sequential-numbergeneration requirement from the statute,
and ensnarls regulated parties in uncertain
and contradictory tests. It eviscerates the
statutory consent defense and discourages
protected speech by holding callers
strictly liable for calls to reassigned

42

numbers. And it encumbers callers with
an unworkable system for processing
revocations of consent, while preventing
callers and consumers from overcoming
this problem by private agreement. In short,
the Commission's interpretation of the
TCPA leads to a $500 price tag on almost
every routine call or text, transforming
the statute's focused ban on random or
sequential calling into an expansive source
of crippling class-action liability."
After ACA filed its opening brief
in the case, the association secured
significant amici, or "friend of the court,"
support from a broad cross-section of
trade groups and other interested parties.
The amicus support was filed as part of the
appeals process and provides important legal
and policy context to the appellate court for
overturning the arbitrary and capricious
provisions of the TCPA ruling.  
The following 17 agencies filed as amici in
eight separate amicus briefs in support of
ACA and the other challengers: 
* American Bankers Association
* Credit Union National Association
* The Independent Community Bankers
of America
* Retail Litigation Center Inc.
* National Retail Federation
* National Restaurant Association
* CTIA - The Wireless Association
* Internet Association
* American Gas Association
* Edison Electric Institute
* National Association of Water
Companies
* National Rural Electric Cooperative
Association
* Communication Innovators
* American Financial Services
Association
* Consumer Mortgage Coalition

ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG


http://www.ACAINTERNATIONAL.ORG

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