On behalf of our client, in January Lemberg & Associates filed a complaint in U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin, against Verizon Wireless. Our client alleged that he had an existing business relationship with Verizon Wireless, but that Verizon Wireless used robocalls to call his cell phone. During his initial conversation with Verizon Wireless, our client told them he didn’t want to be contacted via robocalls and instructed Verizon Wireless to only communicate with him through the U.S. mail. Nevertheless, Verizon Wireless continued calling four or five times per day, and made a total of 393 robocalls to our client’s cell phone. During one call, Verizon Wireless told our client that they could not remove his number and were unable to stop calling him.
The lawsuit charged Verizon Wireless with violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) by using an automatic telephone dialing system and/or using a prerecorded or artificial message on a cell phone; by calling despite our client having revoked his consent to be contacted on his cell phone; and by calling for reasons other than emergency purposes.
Verizon Wireless filed a motion to dismiss the case on the grounds that our client had failed to state a claim under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. Verizon’s argument was twofold: either once consumers give their consent to be robocalled, they can never revoke that consent; or if consumers can revoke their consent, they must do so in writing.
The District Court judge denied Verizon’s motion to dismiss the case, writing, “Consumers can revoke their consent to receive autodialer calls under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and may do so orally.”
This is a resounding victory for consumers who are hounded by robocalls, and we are pleased that the case will move forward.