Q: Are certain telephone calls excluded from the presumptions related to telephone call frequency?
A: Yes. Under the Debt Collection Rule, certain telephone calls are excluded from the telephone call frequencies. A telephone call placed to a person does not count toward the telephone call frequencies if the telephone call is:
- Placed with direct prior consent. A person’s prior consent must be given directly to the debt collector and the calls must be placed within a period no longer than seven consecutive days after receiving the direct prior consent. That is, if a person gives direct prior consent for additional telephone calls about a particular debt to a debt collector, any telephone calls that the debt collector thereafter places to the person about that particular debt do not count toward the telephone call frequencies for a period of up to seven consecutive days. A person’s direct prior consent may also expire before the end of the seven-consecutive-day period. A person’s direct prior consent expires when any of the following occur: (1) the person consents to telephone calls in excess of the telephone call frequencies for a period of less than seven days and such period has ended; (2) the person revokes such direct prior consent; or (3) the debt collector has a telephone conversation with the person regarding the particular debt. Comments 14(b)(3)(i)-2 and -3.
- Not connected to the dialed number. A debt collector’s telephone call does not connect to the dialed number if, for example, the debt collector receives a busy signal or an indication that the dialed number is not in service.
- Placed to certain permitted third parties. These parties include: a consumer’s attorney, the creditor, the creditor’s attorney, the debt collector’s attorney, or a consumer reporting agency (if otherwise permitted by law).
12 CFR § 1006.14(b)(3).
Updated October 1, 2021