CUNA: Definitions, consent revocation methods needed in TCPA

June 14, 2018

Defining key statutory terms and identifying methods to revoke consent in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) will help reduce confusion for credit unions trying to remain in compliance, CUNA wrote to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Wednesday. CUNA’s comments were sent in response to the public notice issued by the FCC in the wake of a court decision that overturned parts of the TCPA.

CUNA has urged the FCC to clarify several issues under the TCPA, as it creates compliance burdens and potential liability for credit unions trying to communicate important account information to members.

“Defining key statutory terms such as an automatic telephone dialing systems (ATDS) and ‘called party’ and identifying reasonable methods to revoke consent consistent with the TCPA’s language and intent will substantially reduce uncertainty and help mitigate the onslaught of TCPA litigation. The commission should also use this opportunity to update antiquated distinctions between wireless and wireline calls when companies make informational calls to their customers or members, as requested in CUNA’s petition for declaratory ruling.”

The D.C. Court of Appeals overturned the FCC’s definition of an autodialer and vacated the FCC’s reassigned number approach in its March decision. CUNA was one of nearly 20 entities that filed a Petition for Declaratory Ruling to revise the definition of an ATDS in light of the decision.

Specifically, CUNA urges the FCC to:

  • Revise its reassigned number framework by defining the called party as the intended recipient;  
  • identify several revocation options that, if used by the consumer, would be sufficient to revoke prior consent. Conversely, failure to use those options would not be effective to revoke consent; and
  • Grant the CUNA petition and eliminate antiquated distinctions between landline and cell phone informational calls.