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Subject:  Debt collectors may have to pay if they call Date:  6/19/2014  7:47 PM
Author:  aj485 Number:  308276 of 312987

There was a recent ruling that says that if debt collectors don't have express permission to call your cell phone, they may have to pay for every call they make. From

Consumers who don’t want to be contacted by debt collectors on their cellphones may have a powerful new ruling on their side. It may not only help them stop these calls, but it may increase the chances that they can collect damages of $500 to $1,500 per call.

In a recent 11th Circuit case, Osorio v. State Farm Bank, the court reinforced restrictions under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act that, among other things, prohibit collectors from using automated dialing systems (more commonly known as “robocalls”) to call consumers on their cellphones without the consumer’s express permission.

he reason this ruling is significant is that in the past, some courts have been divided on whether consumers who have given their cellphone number to a creditor or collector can revoke that permission, and if so, whether they can do so verbally. In this case, the court opined that consumers who have given collectors permission to call their cellphones can revoke their consent verbally. “This is the only appellate opinion,” says Howard. “Although it’s not binding on someone in other parts of the country, it’s very persuasive,” he says.

So for those of you in the 11th Circuit jurisdiction (various areas of Alabama, Georgia and Florida), there is now a binding decision. For those of us in the rest of the country - it's not as clear, but it is a precedent.

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