NEW ORLEANS (Legal Newsline) - Unwarranted calls and faxes from telemarketers are a major problem for both companies and the population at large, leaving many who receive them annoyed and angry.
few have been angry enough to sue, as was the case with Advanced Care Scripts Inc.
Advanced allegedly sent
unsolicited faxes to an oncology clinic in Louisiana. Those faxes were claimed to have violated the
Telephone Consumer Protection Act, or TCPA, which states that express consent
must be given when faxes are solely sent for the purposes of advertising.
the TCPA includes various provisions, Advanced was sued in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana due to
the allegedly unsolicited faxes and because the company purportedly did not include an opt-out
option for the oncology clinic involved in the class action lawsuit.
clinic, Jefferson Radiation-Oncology LLC, filed its class
action in April 2015 on behalf of nearly 24,000 members -- people and
companies -- that claimed to have received unsolicited faxes from Advanced.
brought the suit on behalf of the class,” Julie D. Hoffmeister, an
attorney who co-wrote a blog post on the case with a fellow lawyer, recently told Legal Newsline.
While it looks like the first unsolicited faxes weren’t sent until February
2015, there is other information detailing unsolicited faxes that go as far
back as 2011. Not to mention, Advanced allegedly didn't have the consent of the clinic to send faxes in the first place.
settlement was reached, totaling $9.25
million. Each member of the class who received an unsolicited fax from Advanced will be awarded $500 to $1,500.
lot of defendants tend to settle instead of losing a greater amount down the
road,” Hoffmeister explained.
Advanced initially tried to pin the blame on a third party, WestFax Inc.,
which was the vendor Advanced hired to transmit the faxes to
Jefferson Radiation-Oncology. However, the liability claims against WestFax were
dismissed by a judge in July.
The lawsuit and subsequent settlement should serve as a reminder to companies
that they need to strictly abide by the TCPA at
all times, Hoffmeister said.
TCPA standards and make sure you’re complying with all the requirements of the
act,” she said.