This class action claims that USCB, Inc., doing business as USCB America, violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in making its debt-collection calls to consumers.
The class for this action comprises all persons within the US who received calls from USCB or its agents or employees to their cell phones using an automated dialer or an artificial or prerecorded voice, between June 20, 2013 and June 20, 2017.
The TCPA was passed because of “voluminous consumer complaints” about invasions of privacy via telemarketing or other business calls. Companies could use new technology to make hundreds or thousands of calls to consumers, and when these calls were made to cell phones, they cost consumers money, since cell phone services typically charge for incoming as well as outgoing calls.
The TCPA recognized that “[b]anning such automated or prerecorded telephone calls to the home, except when the receiving party consents to receiving the call or when such calls are necessary in an emergency situation … is the only effective means of protecting telephone consumers from this nuisance and privacy invasion.”
The complaint for this case contends that USCB is a collections company that uses autodialed telephone calls to help it collect money owed on various debts.
Plaintiff Cristina Wiseman did not provide her cell phone number or consent to receiving calls on her cell phone from USCB. In fact, on August 24, 2017, she had her attorney send a cease and desist letter to her creditors. According to the complaint, the letter included the statement that “Client hereby revokes any prior consent that may have been given to receive telephone calls, especially to Client’s cellular telephone, from an automated telephone dialing system or an artificial pre-recorded voice, as outlines in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, 47 U.S.C. § 227.”
The complaint claims that one or more of her accounts was sold to USCB, and that USCB received the cease and desist letter along with the account. Still, the complaint said, on or about August 26, 2016 and August 29, 2016, USCB twice called Wiseman’s cell phone using an automated dialing system and left a message with a pre-recorded or artificial voice. The complaint also claims that USCB’s system can store telephone numbers and then dial the numbers automatically, without human intervention.
According to the complaint, since Wiseman had not provided to USCB any prior consent to receive such calls, and had even specifically revoked any such consent, USCB (or its employess or agents) negligently and/or willfully violated the provisions of the TCPA.