Citibank Unsolicited Text Message Tcpa Class Action
A recent lawsuit against Citibank, for potentially violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”), was thrown out of U.S. District Court of Southern California. Potentially a class-action lawsuit, the case revolved around the issue of SMS text messages without consumer consent. The consumer who brought suit, Boqdan Ryabyshchuck, contended that Citibank ran afoul of the TCPA when it sent him an SMS text to confirm he wanted to opt out of receiving future texts. The TCPA restricts telephone solicitations, the use of automated telephone equipment, and unsolicited advertisements. Specifically, the TCPA limits the use of automatic dialing systems, prerecorded voice messages, unsolicited text messages, and junk faxes.
In May, 2011, Ryabyshchuck contacted Citibank to apply for a credit card; as part of the application process, he gave the bank his cell phone number. Days later Citibank sent him an SMS message, telling him to contact Citi Cards. This text also told Ryabyshchuck he could opt out of more message by texting back “stop,” which he did. Then he got a final message from Citibank’s SMS service, confirming he wouldn’t receive any more texts. Ryabyshchuck tried to argue this last text message was illegal under the TCPA, but Judge Irma Gonzalez threw the suit out.In this case, the court did not agree that Citibank was violating Ryabyshchuck’s rights as a consumer with a single confirmation text. The case ended in the same fashion as a similar suit earlier this year, against Taco Bell. U.S. District Court Judge Marilyn Huff decided that calling a confirmatory text message a violation of the TCPA “would contravene public policy and the spirit of the statute-prevention of unsolicited telemarketing in a bulk format.” The plaintiff in that case, however, later filed an appeal with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has not yet issued a ruling.Several big social network sites (Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter) were also handed similar lawsuits last year; these cases were withdrawn not long after they were filed, and before a ruling on SMS text messages was handed down.
So, what should you do when you get an unsolicited text message? Contact Agruss Law Firm, LLC, for a free consultation. The Federal Trade Commission has stopped billions, yes billions, of unwanted robocalls and unsolicited text messages in the last two years. Agruss Law Firm, LLC, will do the same for you. We will aggressively enforce the law to stop robocalls and unsolicited text messages. Not only will we stop the calls and texts, but you may be entitled to money damages, too. Damages in TCPA cases range from $500.00 – $1,500.00 per call or text. Contact us today for a free consultation.
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