Posted by Chris Alarie on Wed, 08/11/2021 - 11:55
The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a ruling in a Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) lawsuit that sets a potentially dangerous precedent with regards to sellers being held vicariously liable for the actions of lead generators.
The case—Bilek v. Federal Insurance Company—involves an insurance company that hired a marketer to promote its insurance products. In turn, that marketer hired a lead generator. The lead generator called the plaintiff, allegedly in violation of the TCPA. The plaintiff sued the insurance company for these violations, claiming that the lead generators were operating as the defendant’s agents through the intermediary relationship with the marketer.
A district court ruled that Federal Insurance Company could not be held liable for these calls, seeing as it had no direct relationship with the lead generators who made the calls. The Seventh Circuit disagreed and ruled that the lawsuit may proceed. This decision emphasizes the importance of maintaining compliant procedures all throughout the chain of hired agents and third-party affiliates