Collector - August 2018 - 41

PERSPECTIVE

obtain necessary information, some relief
was finally granted in March when ACA
won in court.
The D.C. Circuit Court struck down
several aspects of the 2015 ruling,
finding that the FCC had been arbitrary
and capricious in parts of its TCPA
interpretation. This is a positive step
forward for consumers, who will be able
to receive communications that they
need, about services and goods they
have contracted for, in a timely and more
efficient manner. However, the FCC needs
to do more to fix the confusion that was
caused by past actions.
The D.C. Circuit Court, in the ACA ruling,
indicated that the FCC should provide
workable rules in this area for legitimate
businesses that need to communicate with

customers. As a result, the FCC is currently
seeking comments on several issues related to
its TCPA interpretations, and we are hopeful
that they will create clear and reasonable
rules of the road that will help businesses
understand how they can comply without
fearing predatory class-action litigation.
Another concern is that in some
recent efforts to crack down on the actual
problem actors, legitimate calls can be
mislabeled and in some instances blocked
by voice service providers. Thwarting these
communications does not further the
goal of protecting consumers and instead
actually may harm them.
As lawmakers in D.C. continue with their
important work drawing lines in the sand
against and penalizing bad actors, who are
engaging in harmful illegal communications

such as fraudulent robocalls, it is also equally
important to address the lack of clarity
under the TCPA, such as the definition of
an autodialer for highly regulated businesses
communicating with consumers on cell
phones through calls or texts. New policies
must be appropriately tailored to address
illegal actors while allowing legal and
necessary modern forms of communications.
Accordingly, the FCC should move
forward to create a safe environment for
consumer communications and work with
Congress to provide clear rules for the TCPA
for the millions of legitimate businesses that
need to contact consumers.
Leah Dempsey is vice president and senior
counsel of federal advocacy for ACA
International.

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COLLECTOR 08.18

41


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