Court Finds that a Single Unsolicited Phone Sales Message is Sufficient to Confer Standing in Telephone Consumer Protection Act Claims
By Heather Bessinger - Attorney
The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that a single unauthorized prerecorded sales voicemail on a plaintiff’s cell phone constitutes a violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), and is sufficient to confer standing. In Susinno v. Work Out World, the plaintiff’s complaint identified a single prerecorded phone message from a fitness club left on her cell phone. In finding that the plaintiff had standing to pursue her claim, the Court held that Congress had identified automated and prerecorded calls as a “nuisance and invasion of privacy.” The phone call constituted the same harm to privacy interests as a common law cause of action for intrusion upon seclusion. This decision constitutes a significant benefit for future plaintiffs, as they no longer need to allege any actual injury resulting from a statutory violation – they merely need to allege that a federal statute, such as TCPA, was violated. At the same time, it will be more difficult for defendants to challenge such claims at the pleadings stage for lack of standing.
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