New SMS/Text Messages Requirements for TCPA Compliance Follow
As your trusted partner, Law Ruler wants to ensure that your firm is compliant with recent changes within the telecommunications industry to combat robocalls and spammers. The rules have changed regarding how one may initially communicate with clients.
To comply with the increased monitoring and forthcoming countermeasures that are designed, Law Ruler will now have a ‘double opt-in’ feature available. The goal is to allow all Law Ruler clients to send SMS text messages in a safe and compliant fashion to their customers without interruptions.
What is double opt-in?
A ‘double opt-in’ process means that regardless of any consent given by a client, Law Ruler must confirm with these individuals that they consented to being sent any text messages from the system either manually or through automations.
Why is this required?
If a complaint is filed by a SMS text message recipient, the burden of proof will be on your firm, so it is best to have a paper trail showing that every recipient has opted in. If your account is ever suspected of sending SMS text messages to contacts that have not given their consent, the major phone carriers will request proof that they indeed opted in to receive communications from your firm via SMS. If you are unable to provide proof, there is a risk that all the numbers you use will be flagged as ‘spam’ and if it continues your organization could be banned permanently by all carriers from sending SMS now and in the future. There could be additional fines and sanctions for repeat offenders, depending on the regulations and severity.
Please be aware that the database of companies that are not in compliance is centrally located with the phone carriers, and not maintained by Law Ruler. To ensure all proper consent is verified and documented properly, it’s important that this opt-in process be implemented so that we can easily advocate on your behalf with all the necessary information to remove any chance of being flagged in the future.
What do you need to do?
- There is nothing required from you at this time and if you already have opt-in functionality on all website forms both internal and from vendors then you could potentially turn the double opt-in feature off at your own discretion.
- We strongly recommend you do not do this as if you are flagged there is very little that Law Ruler could do to get you off the carrier blocked list.
- Upon release, the double opt-in feature will be active by default on all systems unless a user with administrative access from the firm deactivates it.
- Moving forward, all new contacts created in your system will be required to opt-in for receiving text messages before any communications will be sent, other than the initial opt-in request.
- As a new contact is created the Law Ruler system will automatically trigger an email and the one-time text message requiring consent.
- Default templates will be provided for both the email and text that are sent and you are welcome to modify them to fit your own verbiage.
What if I already do my own opt-in and don’t want this new process?
If you do not want to use the required double opt-in process, we will allow for you to deactivate it, but you must accept the elevated risk of doing so. And, while many firms may have their own process in-place already you also are responsible for all vendors you work with and their processes as well. If they are to be found texting your clientele without the proper opt-in requirements, then the firm could also be held responsible. And once again, repeated failures to provide proper proof of the client’s consent for the firm or your vendors could and will likely result in your texting capabilities being banned by the carriers, permanently. If this happens there will be nothing that Law Ruler or you could do to remove you from the carrier blocked companies list.
We hope you understand that this is beyond our control and is a requirement that has been implemented to curtail the rise in both harassment and identity theft throughout the nation. It is soon to be required across all platforms within the country within the next 30 to 60 days.
If you have any questions or concerns, then please feel free to reach out to your account manager or email our support team at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your continued patronage.