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Can a Minor Provide Consent for TCPA Calls?

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and Its Implications for Parents

The world of technology and communication has dramatically changed the way we interact with the world, but it has also brought with it new challenges, especially in terms of privacy and unwanted solicitation. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was introduced to address these concerns and protect individuals from unsolicited calls and text messages. However, a recent case has raised an important question: can a minor provide consent for TCPA calls?

The Case of Kristen Hall

Kristen Hall found herself in the midst of this question when she received five unsolicited text messages from Smosh Dot Com and parent company Mythical Entertainment. What made this case unique was that Kristen had placed her cellphone number on the National Do Not Call Registry, and these messages were not for her but for her 13-year-old son.

When she decided to take legal action against the companies, they argued that Kristen lacked standing because she wasn’t the actual user of the phone, nor was she the recipient of the texts.

The Legal Battle

The case reached the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and the decision was groundbreaking. The court ruled that the owner and subscriber of a phone number listed on the Do Not Call Registry has indeed suffered a concrete injury, even if the messages were intended for someone else. This decision was based on the premise that a violation of the TCPA constitutes a concrete injury.

A Broad View of Article III Standing

The Ninth Circuit’s view of Article III standing is expansive, emphasizing that the owner and subscriber of the phone number listed on the Do Not Call Registry have the right to bring suit. The court argued that requiring a heightened level of phone use as a prerequisite for standing contradicts the TCPA’s purpose, which is to protect individuals from unwanted communications.

The court also highlighted that standing is not exclusive; the primary or customary user of a phone may suffer a concrete injury, but this does not preclude the phone’s owner and subscriber from experiencing the same.

What This Means for Parents

This case raises important considerations for parents. In an age where children have access to cellphones and the internet, parents may find themselves facing unsolicited communications on behalf of their children. The Ninth Circuit’s decision suggests that parents can take legal action to protect their family’s privacy and well-being under the TCPA, even if the calls or messages were intended for their children.

Ready to Protect Your Rights Under the TCPA?

If you or your family have experienced unsolicited calls or text messages, we’re here to help. Don’t let your privacy be compromised. Our experienced legal team specializes in TCPA cases, and we’re offering a free consultation to discuss your situation.

Your privacy matters. Let us help you enforce your rights under the TCPA and safeguard your family from unwanted communications.

Source: Can a Minor Provide Consent for TCPA Calls? | JDSUPRA

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