The FTC (Federal Communications Commission) plans to increase efforts to reduce illegal robocalls under Do Not Call regulations.  Of course, we all dislike annoying recorded calls, and the FTC’s renewed determination to combat them is certainly a good thing.  However, it is also important to consider how this might affect BHPH dealers.

This is certainly not the only news concerning BHPH dealers to come out of Washington D.C. recently.  Stories such as the recent Senate vote on the CFBP Finance Bulletin also will affect dealerships.  Many BHPH dealers are now wondering what this newest development may mean for them.

The FTC’s associate director for division of marketing practices, Lois Greisman, spoke at a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation hearing about the most recent efforts being made to deal with the issue of illegal debt collector calls.  In 2017, the Federal Trade Commission received around 4.5 million complaints relating to illegal calls, and Greisman stated that Americans are “understandably frustrated.”  She offered assurances that: “the FTC is using every tool at its disposal to fight these illegal calls.”

In fact, the FTC seems to be taking this fight very seriously.  This past March, the FTC held a joint meeting with the FCC on the issue.  In the same month, the Federal Trade Commission charged Recidivist Telemarketer with making millions of illegal calls selling home security systems.  Now, with the recent Senate Committee meeting, the Federal Trade Commission has made it clear that they are not letting up.

To date, the number of enforcement actions seeking legal penalties the FTC has brought against corporations and individuals numbers 135.  That number is expected to grow as the Federal Trade Commission increases its crackdown.  Among the illegal calls being targeted, robocalls are one of the commission’s focuses.

So what does this mean for BHPH dealers?  The good news for BHPH dealers is that the Federal Trade Commission recognizes phone calls used to contact legitimate debt holders and customers delinquent on their monthly car payments as different from the obnoxious illegal calls they are seeking to curtail.  So, for now at least, BHPH dealers are largely safe from FTC reprisals.  However, to be safer still, some BHPH dealers may wish to double check the Federal Trade Commission’s standards regarding phone calls, and be certain they are adhering to them.  After all, with the current determination shown by the FTC to rid consumers of annoying robocalls, it will not pay to be incautious.

Sources: Federal Trade Commission Robocalls

            Federal Trade Commission Senate Committee Hearing

            Federal Trade Commission Joint Effort

            Federal Trade Commission Charges Recidivist Telemarketer

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