New York State is making sure companies think twice before picking up the phone to make a telemarketing call.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that a settlement agreement had been reached between the state and Hilton Grand Vacations Company, LLC over telemarketing sales calls which were made in violation of the state’s Do Not Call Law.
According to officials, calls were made to New York consumers whose phone numbers were validly registered on the Do Not Call Registry.
Hilton Grand Vacations agreed to pay a settlement of $250,500 and change business practices before continuing to make calls to consumers in New York.
“New York State created the Do Not Call Law to ensure that residents who opt out of receiving promotional calls are not forced to deal with these harassing messages,” Cuomo said. “This settlement will serve as a reminder that companies who violate this law will face consequences and that our administration will continue to protect New Yorkers from these unfair tactics.”
The violations made by the hospitality company include about 334 unsolicited marketing calls to 133 consumers on the National Do Not Call Registry.
Along with the fine, the company also agreed to limit its telemarketing calls to consumers whose numbers are not validly registered on the registry, if the consumer has not specifically directed the company or any of its affiliates to refrain from calling. Other consumers include “Hilton HHonors” members, provided they have not asked the company to refrain from contacting them; consumers who have established business relationships with Hilton directly; and others.
The New York State Do Not Call Law — which is enforced by the state’s Division of Consumer Protection — became effective in 2001. The law allows consumers to put their home landline and personal cellphone numbers onto a central registry to reduce the number of unsolicited telemarketing calls.
In 2003, the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission came together to create the National Do Not Call Program and Registry.
Anyone who has a complaint against a business is asked to call the Division of Consumer Protection’s hotline at 800-697-1220.