Your Rights: Telemarketing

You might be distracted by their pointed horns and forked tail, but don’t forget you have rights when telemarketers call. If those rights are trampled by their cloven feet, you have recourse.

According to federal statute, telemarketers must

• Give the seller’s name
• Disclose that the call is a sales call
• Describe their exact product
• Declare the total cost and any terms of service prior to payment
• Reveal if they don’t allow refunds, exchanges or cancellations

Telemarketers must not

• Misrepresent their product
• Call before 8 am or after 9pm
• Threaten, intimidate or harass you, or call again if you tell them not to

If any telemarketer doesn’t adhere to any of the above guidelines, you can file a complaint with the FTC. They have a ninja attack squad.


Edit Your Comment

  1. homerjay says:

    I would say that virtually 100% of telemarketing calls into my house have been squashed by the DNC list. HOWEVER, I am SO SICK of getting poll and charity calls.

    If I want to give to a charity, your call is not going to make me do it. ESPECIALLY if you’re with the so called “policemans union”

  2. Ben Popken says:

    Yeah, that’s the thing, non-profs are exempt from this post and the DNC.

  3. jwissick says:

    A combination of the DNC list and an unlisted number keep the poll takers and charities off my phone. I have had one call in the last few years.

  4. AndyfromIL says:

    Does anyone know if the government sells the expired “do not call” list. That would be worth some bucks on the open market. I have a paranoia of what happens on the expiration date(is it 5 years of “protection”??)…

    I’ve always wondered that, but I would suspect a state government of selling you out more than the federal.

  5. AndyfromIL says:

    I mean “will sell”, this program is not old enough yet right?

  6. magic8ball says:

    Of course the other exception is if you have a “prior business relationship” with the company, meaning that you have bought something from them or expressed interest in some way. And they can still keep calling you after the relationship is terminated (i.e. you are no longer using their product/service).

  7. Angiol says:

    magic8ball: I believe, however, that they can only call you for 6 months after the relationship is terminated.

  8. TBirdAbsurd says:

    I am a telemarketer and the DNC list is useful in some cases, but if you are very mean and irate with one of us over the phone, we sometimes mark the phone call as a not home and will continue to call. Be more polite to telemarketers… I work just like anyone else and it’s putting me through school. It’s good money for the hours and they work around my school schedule. I am very polite when I call and do everything I’m supposed to. Some people just have no time on their hands and they feel they need to make our jobs harder, but you don’t. Just be nice about it and get over it. The good ones are only trying to help you.

  9. Alexis2 says:

    I’ve asked to be put on the alleged Do Not Call list yet I keep getting calls. The loophole they are using is to say they are doing “research” or a “survey”. I don’t want those calls either. What good is this Do No Call list if there are loopholes like this? I can’t tell you how many of these calls I get a week. I should not have to avoid answering the phone simply because I don’t want to be bombarded with these calls I have no interest in.

    And nowadays wherever you go people are asking you for your zip code or your phone number. Why if I all I came to do was buy a gallon of milk? I decline. Now I have a fake number I give if they insist. But for the most part I just decline. I do NOT wish to be contacted. If I’m interested in a product or service I will contact THEM agreed?

  10. TBirdAbsurd says:

    Telemarketers have rights too. We shouldn’t have to listen to people cussing and screaming at us. It’s rude. We are still going to contact you whether you’re on the DNC or not. Our company recently started calling people on the DNC list for the exact same thing they told us to take them off the list for and we’ve had hundreds of people go ahead with the bit. They don’t even remember asking to be taken off the list. BE NICE PLEASE!