CA Ventures, LLC is the parent company of a number of real estate investment and development projects. The complaint for this class action alleges that it promotes its services and projects by sending text message to consumer cell phones, in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
The class for this action is all persons in the US to whose cell phones CA Ventures, or someone acting on its behalf, sent a text message advertising its goods and services, between May 22, 2015 and May 22, 2019, without having obtained the persons’ prior express written consent.
During the 1980s and 1990s the increasing availability of automatic dialing systems and message recording technology upped the number of telemarketing calls that companies could make in a day. As calls from telemarketers became an increasing nuisance, Congress passesd the TCPA, which attempts to restrict telemarketing.
Calls to cell phones were of particular concern. Since cell phone owners pay for incoming as well as outgoing calls, telemarketing calls cost them money. Because of that, the TCPA is particularly protective of cell phone owners. Businesses are prohibited from making non-emergency calls to cell phones using automatic dialing systems or artificial or prerecorded voices unless they have the cell phone owners’ prior express written consent.
The term “calls” refers to any kind of incoming contact, including live voice calls, recorded voicemail, or text messages.
In this case, plaintiff Brittany Cortazar received an unwanted text message from CA Ventures on April 8, 2019. It began, “Upgrade your lifestyle this Fall, and live luxurious [sic] at Identity Miami! Tour our model today and sign your lease to receive a $500 gift card!...” It included a link and a telephone number.
The message is clearly telemarketing as it encouraged Cortazar’s future purchase or investment in property, goods, or services.
The complaint claims that Cortazar did not give CA Ventures her express written consent to receive such messages. It further claims that the impersonal and generic nature of the message indicates that it was sent as part of a larger mailing to numerous people, using an automatic dialing system.
The complaint alleges not only violations of the TCPA but willful and knowing violations. It asks for an injunction against the company, forbidding it from sending any more such messages to cell phones using automatic dialing systems, and also for statutory damages and any other relief the court sees fit to grant.