Federal Compliance Information
The Federal Trade Commission requires that the agency that delivers the phone data, or Service Provider (SP), scrub the phone data against the Do Not Call (DNC) list prior to delivery utilizing a Subscription Account Number (SAN). Your SAN license allows you to contact up to 5 area codes for free. The SP is also required to review your phone script to ensure you are not attempting to fraudulently sell to or contact individuals. You may select or edit one of our sample scripts or submit your own. Unless your organization is Exempt (see info on Exempt Organizations below), simply complete this document and we’ll take care of the rest. You’ll receive an email to confirm the email address on file with the FTC to receive your SAN. For more information about the FTC Do Not Call (DNC) and the Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR), click here.
(FTC Q&A for Telemarketers & Sellers)
What is an Exempt Organization?
In general, your organization may access as an Exempt Organization if it is not required to access the National Do Not Call Registry because either (1) it is a nonprofit organization; or (2) an organization that only makes telephone calls that are in one or more of the categories described below.
To qualify for this type of exemption, an organization must be truly nonprofit B. That is, it must not be organized to conduct business for its own profit or the profit of its members. Please note, however, that an organization that has been incorporated as a nonprofit or recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as tax-exempt is not necessarily an Exempt Organization for purposes of the National Do Not Call Registry. The FTC has successfully charged that an organization that purports to be a nonprofit is not exempt if the organization is, in fact, operated for the profit of its members, officer, or affiliated for-profit companies. See FTC v. National Consumer Council, Inc., and FTC v. Debt Management Foundation Services, Inc., at http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2005/03/creditcouncel.htm.
Organizations that only make telephone calls that fall within exempt categories.
A for-profit organization may register as an exempt organization if ALL of the telephone calls that it makes fall within one or more of these categories:
- Informational messages:
The Telemarketing Sales Rule applies to calls that are made as part of “a plan, program, or campaign which is conducted to induce the purchase of goods or services . . . .” The Rule does not apply to calls to deliver purely informational messages that are not delivered to induce purchases. For example, a message from an airline that contains only information about a flight cancellation is an informational message. However, telephone calls that combine information with a direct or indirect solicitation for goods or services are not exempt, and a for-profit organization that makes such calls is not an exempt organization.
- Surveys or political polls:
If calls are being made for the sole purpose of conducting a survey or poll, they are exempt. But purported survey calls are not exempt if they are also part of a plan, program or campaign to induce purchases of goods or services. Organizations placing such telemarketing calls must comply with the Do Not Call provisions and are not Exempt Organizations.
- Promoting a political party or candidate:
If calls are being made solely for a political purpose and are not part of a plan, program or campaign to induce purchases of goods or services, the calls are exempt.
- Business-to-Business Calls:
Most phone calls to a business made with the intent to solicit sales from that business are exempt from the Do Not Call provisions.
- Solicitations for charitable contributions:
Calls that solicit a contribution, donation or gift of money or other thing of value are exempt from the National Do Not Call Registry requirements even if the calls are made by a for-profit organization. (Nevertheless, for-profit organizations soliciting contributions must honor call recipients’ request to be placed on an entity-specific do not call list.)
- Calls to consumers who have an Established Business Relationship with the organization on whose behalf the call is made:
Sellers and telemarketers may call a consumer whose number is on the National Do Not Call Registry if the seller on whose behalf the call is made has an established business relationship with the consumer—provided the consumer has not asked to be on the seller’s entity-specific do not call list. There are two kinds of established business relationships. One is based on the consumer’s purchase, rental, or lease of the seller’s goods or services, or a financial transaction between the consumer and seller, within 18 months preceding a telemarketing call. The 18-month period runs from the date of the last payment, transaction, or shipment between the consumer and the seller. The other is based on a consumer’s inquiry or application regarding a seller’s goods or services, and exists for three months starting from the date the consumer makes the inquiry or application. For more information, please see the Exemptions to the National Do Not Call Registry Provisions section of Complying with the Telemarketing Sales Rule at http://business.ftc.gov.
- Calls to consumers who have given their written permission to receive telemarketing calls:3
Sellers and telemarketers are allowed to call any consumer who has given his or her express agreement to receive calls, even if the consumer’s number is in the National Do Not Call Registry. The consumer must give express agreement in writing to receive calls placed by—or on behalf of—the seller, including the number to which calls may be made, and the consumer’s signature. The signature may be a valid electronic signature, if the agreement is reached online. For more information, please see the Exemptions to the National Do Not Call Registry Provisions section of Complying with the Telemarketing Sales Rule at http://business.ftc.gov//documents/bus27-complying-telemarketing-sales-rule.
The CAN-SPAM Act is a set of Federal regulations that govern the use of email in direct marketing. To learn more about the CAN-SPAM Act and its regulations, please download the PDF file below.
The CAN-SPAM Act: A Compliance Guide for Business