INDIANAPOLIS (Legal Newsline) - Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller announced an agreement on Friday with a company and its owner for allegedly sending text messages to consumers in violation of the state's Do Not Call Law.
Reply4Money.com and Dan Hayes, the company's owner, allegedly sent text messages to consumers offering pre-approved loans. The was the first action by Indiana concerning a company that allegedly texted Hoosiers on the Do Not Call registry.
"These settlements underscore the office's pursuit against companies that break the law - knowingly or unknowingly - by sending unwanted calls, text messages or even faxes to Hoosiers," Zoeller said.
"The attorney general's office continues to listen to consumers and understands many on the Do Not Call list are still contacted with annoying solicitations. That's why we are working to keep pace with dialing technology and finding new ways to crackdown on violators."
In 2011, the Do Not Call law was changed to include text messages sent to a wireless telephone number as telephone sales calls.
Reply4Money.com allegedly sent text messages to at least five consumers in Indiana congratulating the Hoosiers on being approved for a loan of up to $1,500 that could be wired to them in as little as one hour. The company said the consumers consented to receive the solicitations but the complainants allegedly denied giving their permission or information.
Zoeller's office also reached five other Do Not Call settlements resulting in $73,000 in total payments for attorneys fees and penalties.
Under the terms of a settlement with Precise Enterprises LLC, doing business as Vehicle Processing Department of California, the company will pay $6,500 in costs and penalties. Precise Enterprises allegedly made sales calls offering automobile service contracts to Do Not Call consumers.
Guard Me Inc. of New Jersey allegedly made sales calls that offered home security systems to consumers with numbers on the Do Not Call List. Under the terms of the settlement, Guard Me will pay $8,000 in penalties and costs.
Med-Care Diabetic & Medical Supplies of Florida agreed to pay $36,000 in state costs and penalties to resolve allegations of sales calls offering diabetes supplies to consumers on the Do Not Call List.
The Readers Direct Publication Inc. of Florida agreed to pay $5,000 in costs and penalties to resolve allegations that it made sales calls offering magazines to consumers on the state's list.
Vacation Express USA of Georgia agreed to pay $17,500 in costs and penalties to resolve allegations that it sent vacation packages to Indiana fax numbers. It is illegal to send advertising faxes that are unsolicited to any fax number in Indiana.
Under the terms of the respective settlements, the defendants agreed to comply with Indiana's laws in the future and not place illegal calls or send faxes to residents of Indiana.