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Peterson’s Harley-Davidson South Telemarketing Texts TCPA Class Action

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Cell Phone in Circle with Strikethrough

Telemarketing may be one of the least popular things on the planet. Still, someone must be making money from it, because companies still seem bent on doing it, even though the people they purportedly want to turn into customers usually hate it. The complaint for this class action alleges that Peterson’s Harley-Davidson South, LLC sent telemarketing text messages to consumer cell phones without permission, thus violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). 

The class for this action is all persons who

  • Were sent a text message by or on behalf of Peterson’s Harley-Davidson South, LLC,
  • Using an automatic dialing system, 
  • To solicit purchases of Peterson’s goods and services,
  • At any time from July 19, 2015 on, and
  • From whom Peterson’s claims either that (a) it did not obtain prior express written consent for such messages or (b) it obtained prior express written consent in the same manner as Peterson’s claims it supposedly obtained it from the plaintiff in this case.

The TCPA was passed in 1991, in an attempt to give consumers some control over who contacted them with telemarketing. By then, the development of automated systems and the ability to send out prerecorded messages to thousands of people at one time had made telemarketing intensely annoying to many consumers.

Cell phones were a particular concern, since cell phone owners must pay for incoming as well as outgoing calls. This shifts part of the expense of advertising to consumers, who do not even want the messages. 

The upshot is that businesses are not allowed to place calls to consumer cell phones for telemarketing purposes, using automatic dialing systems or artificial or prerecorded voices, unless it has the consumers’ prior express written consent to receive such calls.

In this case, on March 8, 2019, plaintiff John Schamy received a telemarketing message on his cell phone from Peterson’s, advertising an event to take place at its site. 

The error-filled message read, “Hi John. Join Peterson’s Harley Davidson South for free BBQ, raffles and music. The event starts at 12 pm. Our dealers have serving South Florida for 65 years. Offering the newest and most innovative features in the motorcycling world. Come and check out what are all about for these special weekend. Saturday 03/09/2019. Best Hector.” 

Schamy claims that he had never given Peterson’s his prior express written consent to send such messages to his cell phone. 

The complaint alleges not just violation of the TCPA but knowing and willful violation. This would entitle Schamy and other class members to up to $1,500 per incident in statutory damages.

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