Reps. Kustoff, Ross Reintroduce Bipartisan DO NOT Call Act
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Last week, Congressman David Kustoff (TN-08) and Congresswoman Deborah Ross (NC-02) reintroduced the bipartisan, Deter Obnoxious, Nefarious, and Outrageous Telephone Calls (DO NOT Call) Act in the House of Representatives. This legislation would help deter robocalls by creating stricter penalties for companies and individuals who engage in the intentional harassment of consumers.
In 2022, Americans received more than 50 billion robocalls and lost an estimated $40 billion to telephone scams and fraud schemes; a $10 billion increase from 2021. Despite efforts by Congress and industry to combat illegal robocalls, there is little evidence that they are slowing down, according to a news release.
“West Tennesseans, and all Americans, can agree that robocalls are a nuisance that take away from our everyday lives,” said Congressman Kustoff. “I introduced the DO NOT Call Act with Congresswoman Ross to give our judicial system more authority to protect Americans from receiving these calls, and from being scammed and defrauded as a result. I urge my colleagues in the House of Representatives to support this crucial legislation and provide Americans much needed relief from harassing robocalls and scams.”
“Everybody hates robocalls. While there are certain limited situations where they make sense, by and large they are a way of letting someone waste our time without wasting their time. I appreciate the efforts of Congressman Kustoff to stop this relentless annoyance and look forward to using the tools he is providing to protect Tennesseans from obnoxious interruptions,” said Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti.
“The troubling rise in robocalls isn’t just annoying – it poses a serious threat to consumers, especially older Americans,” said Congresswoman Ross. “Malicious actors and companies are targeting vulnerable Americans with aggressive, manipulative tactics to extract sensitive personal information and defraud and scam victims. There is an urgent need for Congressional action to protect consumers, deter predatory robocalls, and hold individuals and companies accountable. I am grateful for Congressman Kustoff’s partnership on this issue and look forward to advancing this important legislation.”
“Robocallers are at best annoying and at worst a way for criminals to steal people’s hard-earned money. The scammers who make these calls need to be held responsible, which is exactly what Rep. Ross is prioritizing with her work to pass the DO NOT Call Act and impose harsher penalties for robocallers and scammers. I look forward to continuing to partner with Rep. Ross to fight to end robocalls and protect North Carolinians,” said North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein.
Originally introduced in the 117th Congress, the DO NOT Call Act will create stricter penalties for companies and individuals who engage in the intentional harassment of consumers. Specifically, this legislation will allow prison terms for up to one year for willfully and knowingly violating the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991, allow prison terms for up to three years for excessive or repeated violations of the law, and double the maximum penalties currently under TCPA for falsifying caller identification from $10,000 to $20,000.
This legislation builds on the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act that Congressman Kustoff introduced in March 2019. The TRACED Act was signed into law by President Donald Trump on December 30, 2019.
Thank you for introducing this legislation. I was visiting my 91 year old Mother last week and she received seven robo calls within two hours. First call was at 8:00am. They start their spill with “this is blank with Medicare, you may be eligible for additional benifits. Then they ask for your medicare number. My 91 yo mother thinks it’s legit.
Do what ever you can to stop the scammers! You have my full support.