Key US Regulations

Telephone Consumer Protection Act

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is a US federal law that regulates telemarketing calls, auto-dialed calls, pre-recorded calls, text messages, and unsolicited faxes.

The law requires telemarketers to obtain prior express written consent from consumers before contacting them for marketing purposes via phone calls, text messages, and faxes.

The TCPA also requires telemarketers to provide a way for consumers to opt-out of receiving future messages. The law sets out fines and penalties for violators, including fines of up to $1,500 per violation.

TCPA highlights

  • Requires prior express written consent.

  • Can only be made between 8 AM and 9 PM in the local time of the recipient.

  • Must include opt-out instructions.

Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA)

The Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA), is a trade organization that represents the wireless communications industry in the United States, like Verizon and AT&T.

The organization sets industry standards and provides guidance and resources to its members, which include wireless carriers, device manufacturers, and mobile content providers. The CTIA also works to protect consumers by promoting the responsible use of wireless technology and advocating for policies that benefit the industry and its customers.

In relation to SMS marketing, the CTIA has established guidelines and best practices to help businesses comply with relevant laws and regulations, such as the federal TCPA.

While not adhering to CTIA guidelines does not necessarily result in legal action against your business, there can still be negative consequences for non-compliance. If the CTIA discovers that you have violated their rules, they may inform the mobile carriers about this violation. The mobile carriers could then suspend or terminate your access to their customers until you address the issue.

  • Must include an explicit opt-out mechanism (such as "STOP" or "UNSUBSCRIBE" commands).

  • Cannot send messages to individuals who have not given express prior consent.

  • Must provide clear and conspicuous disclosure of the sending party's identity.

  • Must honor opt-out requests within a reasonable time period.

  • Must have prior express consent before placing a marketing or telemarketing call.

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