Posted by Ben Stark on Tue, 06/13/2017 - 14:52
The quick answer . . . “Serial Litigators”. Who are they? Serial litigators opt into lead generation programs intent on turning them into TCPA and class action lawsuits. These experienced litigators have sued before and know exactly what they are doing. Their strategy includes methodically completing online forms and responding to texts that place them on the contact lists of a variety of unsuspecting marketers. Once hidden in your data, they collect data on your company and maintain a contact log as evidence to present in court.
“Some lawyers go to ridiculous lengths to generate new TCPA business. They have asked family members, friends, and significant others to download calling, voicemail, and texting apps in order to sue the companies behind each app.” -- Ajit Pai, Chairman of the FCC
Serial litigators are part of an extensive network of likeminded attorneys who share their expertise for filing and winning TCPA lawsuits. Recent class actions have resulted in settlements ranging from $30 million to $75 million. Of that amount, the plaintiff’s attorneys typically walk away with 30% of the settlement. Is it any wonder that TCPA lawsuits have become a lucrative business?
I Follow the Rules, Am I Still at Risk From Serial Litigators?
No business is safe from serial litigators who will bate your business into inadvertent regulatory mistakes that results in TCPA violations and a costly lawsuit. At the end of the day, judges don’t care if you were set up or not. Whether you’re a business-to-consumer or business-to-business marketer, you don’t want to tangle with them. Strategies exist for reducing the likelihood of your business calling serial litigators, such as:
- Only call consumers who have provided your business with prior consent.
- Perform a Litigator Scrub® on your campaign data to remove high risk phone numbers associated with known TCPA attorneys and serial litigators.
- Perform a TCPA Reassigned ID℠ to identify reassigned cell phone numbers and reduce wrong number calls. One of those wrong numbers could be a serial litigator and you may now be on their radar for a lawsuit.
- Don’t over-dial your data. If a serial litigator is hidden in your data, they can only sue your business for the few calls they received.
- Audit or terminate “opt-in” lead generators that result in frequently complaints and demand letters by individuals who deny they provided consent.