Staying Compliant with the Telemarketing Sales Rule When Using Voice Recorded Messages

Voice recorded telemarketing messages are a great tool for getting your message out into the world. However, when utilizing this kind of communication, it is absolutely essential that you take measures to stay compliant with the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) and other laws that govern this communication you may choose to have with your audience. While everyone’s situation is different and you should sit down with an attorney to make a plan for your business to stay compliant, these tips can help you get started.

  1. No cold calls — you need express, advance consent.

Don’t even think about making a recorded call to someone who hasn’t opted in. The TSR requires a written agreement before you can engage in this type of communication with anyone. This agreement must be signed by the recipient of the call and include unambiguous language declaring their willingness to receive your pre-recorded telemarketing calls. They must provide their phone number and signature. You may be exempt from this if you are a health care provider or a nonprofit, but you should check with an attorney to make sure this applies in your specific circumstances. 

  1. Make it easy to opt out.

The law requires that there be a quick and easy way for someone who picks up to say no to future calls. This option should also be clear in any voicemail you leave. Most telemarketers choose to give people they call the option to opt out by saying a special word or pressing a special button. When the person does so, the call must immediately disconnect. For voicemail, it can be a toll-free opt out number. Once someone has opted out, you cannot call them again. You should have an in-house Do Not Call list to keep track of this. 

  1. You have to follow through with your calls. 

TSR prohibits you from abandoning a call after you’ve begun to place it. Beware, this might be difficult with predictive dialers. TSR does have a safe harbor amendment to allow for honest mistakes, but you need to document your efforts to comply with the no abandonment rule. Also keep in mind that your message needs to begin within two seconds of the person answering the phone. 

Who can help telemarketers stay compliant?

At Cove Law, we are committed to helping telemarketers stay compliant with the law. We can also offer you guidance if you have been accused of violating the TSR. To learn more about our services, we invite you to contact us today!