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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations

Washington enacts robocall measures

State Issues State Legislation Robocalls Consumer Protection

State Issues

On April 20, the Washington governor signed HB 1051 to expand existing provisions regulating robocalls and telephone solicitations and prohibit abusive telephone communications that mislead or harm state residents. In doing so, the Act extends liability to “persons who provide substantial assistance or support in the origination and transmission of robocalls” that violate state law, and prohibits the initiation of unwanted calls to phone numbers listed on the National Do Not Call Registry pursuant to the Telemarketing Sales Rule. Among other things, practices that violate the Act’s provisions will be considered an unfair or deceptive act in trade or commerce and an unfair method of competition for purposes of applying the state’s consumer protection act. Injured persons may bring a civil action in Washington superior court to prevent further violations and “shall recover actual damages or $1,000 per violation of this section, whichever is greater.” The Act is effective July 23.