November 2010, Auto Dealer Today - WebXclusive
The Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) regulates telemarketing, which is defined as “a plan, program, or campaign . . . to induce the purchase of goods or services or a charitable contribution.”
Among other things, the TSR:
• prohibits calling consumers on the National Do Not Call Registry
• requires disclosures of specific information
• prohibits misrepresentations
• limits when telemarketers may call consumers
• requires transmission of Caller ID information
• prohibits abandoned outbound calls (“Abandoned calls often result from the telemarketers’ use of predictive dialers … An outbound telephone call is ‘abandoned’” if a sales representative isn’t connected to the call “within two seconds of the person’s completed greeting.”), subject to a safe harbor
• prohibits unauthorized billing
• sets payment restrictions for the sale of certain goods and services
• requires that specific business records be kept for two years
• prohibits making outbound telemarketing calls outside the hours of 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
• prohibits the use of prerecorded messages unless the customers has given written consent
Penalties for non-compliance: Violating the TSR can lead to civil penalties of $16,000 per violation.
Please note: This is not legal advice and dealers should always seek the assistance of qualified legal counsel.
From "19 Laws, Rules and Regulations That Can Cost You More Than Money" in the September 2010 issue of Auto Dealer Monthly.