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Indiana Drastically Reduces the Types of Companies Required to Register as a Telemarketer

Companies that were required to register as a Telemarketer in Indiana in 2019 may no longer need to do so.

Background: On May 5, 2019 the Governor of Indiana signed into law an amendment to the Indiana Telemarketing Registration law. This amendment required anyone who called a consumer in an attempt to sell a good or service to register as a telemarketer in Indiana. With the effective date of the law set at July 1, 2019 many companies scrambled to comply with this new requirement.

Update: Reversing course on March 30, 2020, the legislature amended the Telemarketing Registration requirements again and drastically reduced the number of entities now required to register under state law.

First, entities that only make calls that are exempt from Indiana’s Do Not Call statute are no longer required to register, even if they qualify as a seller. The following are some of the exemptions to the Do Not Call statute:

  • Calls made in response to an express request from the person called.
  • Calls made in connection with an existing debt or contract for payment or performance that has not been completed at the time of the call.
  • Calls made by insurance providers who are licensed under IC 27-1-15.6 or IC 27-1-15.8 of the Indiana State Code.
  • Calls by communications service providers to consumers they have an established business relationship in which the provider is offering broadband internet service.

Second, the updated law reinstates the definition of “seller” removed in the previous year. Under the new law, registration is required under circumstances where the seller is making a misrepresentation. Specifically, the only sellers required to register are those who make solicitations where any of the following occur:

  • A false representation or implication that a prospect will receive a gift, prize, or the value of a gift or prize.
  • An offer of a vacation at a reduced price if the vacation involves the prospect attending a presentation to purchase a time share or camping club membership and if the seller misrepresents the value of the vacation, does not own the time share or camping club, or does not represent the owner of the time share or camping club.
  • A representation or implication that a prospect who buys office equipment or supplies will, because of some unusual event, be able to buy these items at discounted prices.
  • A false representation or implication as to the identity of the person making the solicitation.
  • A representation or implication that the items for sale are manufactured or supplied by a person other than the actual manufacturer or supplier.

We understand that this is a rather strange list of companies that are required to register.

The updated law goes into effect retroactively as of January 1, 2020.

Companies that were required to register as a telemarketer in Indiana in 2019 should review their marketing activities and consider whether they are still required (unlikely) to register given the updates made to the law.

For more details about the bill, visit: http://iga.in.gov/legislative/2020/bills/house/1109#digest-heading

To read the updated bill, visit: https://legiscan.com/IN/text/HB1109/2020

Please reach out to us at connect@compliancepoint.com if you have any questions about this topic or how CompliancePoint can assist your organization with managing your marketing compliance.

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