The insurance world is quickly becoming online. While most towns still have a local State Farm agent, you are more likely to see dozens of insurance apps and Internet advertisements. Many of these sites and apps advertise they can find you the best price on a wide variety of insurance products including life, car and home insurance policies.
According to J.D. Power, about 75% of people seeking insurance now shop online.
How many people have heard the radio commercials for Big Lou or social media ads for price comparison apps like Gabi and the Zebra? While on some apps and in some states, you can truly buy insurance online, many times you simply get quotes. Often these sites and apps are a trap run by lead generating firms. The result is unwanted telemarketing calls.
Although many of these apps and ads are not operated by insurance companies, insurers contract with them for leads. That is important because if the marketing company violates the law, both the marketing company and its insurance company clients can be liable for damages.
Because these services often result in unwanted phone calls and text messages, consumers can fight back against these calls through a law called the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). Under the act, you may be entitled to damages of between $500 and $1,500 per call.
The TCPA prohibits telemarketers from:
- Using automated, robocalls to target potential customers;
- Contacting consumers without prior express consent;
- Sending internet to telephone text messages;
- Calling repeatedly or between certain hours (generally from 9:00 pm to 8:00 am).
What to Do if You Receive an Unwanted Insurance Company Call or Text
When you used the app or called in response to an ad, you may have or may not have consented to receiving telemarketing calls. To comply with the law, text messages are required to have an easy method of opting out. If you get a phone call, tell the caller to place you on their Do Not Call list.
Assuming those measures do not work, begin a diary or keep notes of every time a person called, the date and time of the call, the number showing up in your caller ID and any other information that may later help us prosecute the offenders.
If the calls are in the form of junk faxes or text messages, save or screenshot the messages.
Do I Have a Case? – How Do I Sue an Insurance Company for Unwanted Calls
There are a wide variety of ways that business and marketing companies violate the TCPA and the National Do Not Call list. Violators certainly aren’t limited to insurance agents and companies.
You may have a case if:
- An insurance company or telemarketer calls you between 9 pm and 8 am
- Telemarketers continue to call after you tell them to stop
- A telemarketer fails to properly identify him or herself (more on that below)
- Telemarketers call you using an artificial voice or recorded message
- Telemarketers use auto dialing equipment to call you (virtually everyone uses this technology)
- Telemarketers make robocalls to you
- Telemarketers contact you if you are on the national do not call registry or if you asked to be placed on the company’s do not call list
- You receive unsolicited text messages
- A telemarketer calls your cell phone without your prior consent
- You Receive Ringless Voicemails
What Are the Penalties for Violating the Law? (How Much is my Case Worth?)
The company making the calls must pay you between $500 and $1500 for each illegal call or text. We have seen cases where mortgage companies have called prospects over 100 times. The awards in these cases can mount quickly so you should maintain a diary or at least screenshot the calls or texts to prove how many times you were contacted.
Take Action Today – How Do I Sue a Telemarketer?
If you have received unwanted calls or text messages from an insurance company or other telemarketers, you may be entitled to substantial financial compensation. In our experience, illegal telemarketers don’t just call once. Chances are that if they are illegally making calls, they won’t just stop with a single call. With violations of between $500 and $1500 per call, even a dozen unwanted calls could mean almost $20,000 in damages.
Ready to learn more? Contact us online by email or by phone for a free case evaluation. Our goal is to help you stop the harassment, end the calls and secure you a high damage award. We do this through individual and national class actions.
United American Insurance Sued for Unsolicited Calls
Kyle Miholich is a resident of San Diego. He is not a customer of United American nor had he contacted them seeking insurance. In April, he received a call on his mobile phone. It was a prerecorded voice call.
Because he had never consented to the call and was also on the national do not call list, the call was illegal. Typically, we do not consider cases where a caller just receives one unsolicited call. Often people switch numbers and someone that may have consented to calls two years ago has since moved and doesn’t port his or her number.
Miholich sued and brought his complaint as a class action. As noted above, we typically shy away from single call cases but the presence of a prerecorded voice serves as a giant red flag. Companies that use artificial voices or prerecorded messages typically are engaged in high volume robocalling.
Pre-recorded messages, artificial voices, ringless voice mails, a click and long pause before an operator gets on the line… all are red flags of a large scale telemarketing scheme that violates the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
Once again, to learn more visit our telemarketing lawsuit information page or one of the specialized pages [links above]. Ready to see if you have a case? Contact us online by email or by phone for a free case evaluation. Our goal is to help you stop the harassment, end the calls and secure you a high damage award. We do this through individual and national class actions.