Keller Williams Realty has agreed to pay $40 million to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging the major real estate franchisor’s agents made unsolicited, pre-recorded calls and texts to consumers without their consent, including calls to consumers on the National Do Not Call Registry. Such calls violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) that was passed into law in 1991.
The settlement benefits consumers who received two or more calls or text messages from Keller Williams on a phone number that appeared on the National Do Not Call Registry, where the calls included an artificial or prerecorded message and wher the phone calls were made using an automatic dialing system since May 2, 2014.
Keller Williams hasn’t admitted any wrongdoing but agreed to the settlement to resolve these allegations.
In addition to providing cash funds, Keller Williams will create a TCPA task force to enhance its compliance with the federal law and will make TCPA and National Call Registry resources more easily available to Keller Williams franchisees and provide additional materials.
Cold calling is an important part of many agents’ marketing plan, especially calling expired listings. Before starting a cold calling, agents should talk with their Broker to ensure compliance with prevailing law(s) and to utilize any broker provided tools to ensure compliance. Cold calling can be a reliable source of business for real estate professionals when done within the law.