Disclaimer: This blog is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice and does not create or intend to create an attorney-client relationship. This blog post should never be used to replace the advice of your personal attorney.

DNC List Cleaning 101

The Federal Do Not Call registry is an essential piece of legislation that companies must abide by if they want to avoid consumer complaints that can lead to litigation. The Do Not Call list is, as the name suggests, a list of phone numbers for consumers who do not want to be contacted for marketing purposes. Thus, whenever a company is performing a marketing campaign involving making outbound sales calls, the company must comply with the DNC. With over two hundred and thirty million phone numbers on the list, DNC compliance is a challenge. 

Almost all telemarketing companies have a list of contact numbers for sales calls, and that list must be checked against the federal DNC at least once every 31 days. If a number which is on a company’s call list is found to be on the DNC list, obviously it must be removed from the call list. If removal does not occur, and a call gets made to a DNC listed number, the consumer who is called can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission; the fines can reach over $40,000 per violation. Checking the millions of registrations on the federal DNC list (which contains about 230,000,000 phone numbers and changes daily), plus the 12 states that have separate state registries, without ever making a mistake is next to impossible. That is where TCPA Protect’s DNC cleaner comes in.

What Is a DNC Cleaner?

cleaning, of course, is the act of cleaning something, so a DNC cleaner takes a company’s calling list, compares it to the DNC list, and cleans or deletes any matches. This ensures that all the numbers on the calling list can receive telemarketing calls, so long as there is TCPA compliance, also. 

The 31-day period for checking the DNC list is applicable since the FTC informs consumers who register on the DNC to wait 31 days for telemarketing calls to stop. After 31 days, if a telemarketing call occurs, the consumer can file a complaint. Incidentally, the FTC updates the DNC list daily. 

What Are the Advantages of TCPA Protect DNC cleaning?

Using a DNC cleaner saves time and money, though it does require an upfront investment. The DNC cleaning service from TCPA Protect is both affordable and thorough, and  its use permits a company’s marketing team to do what it does best, market and sell, rather than be concerned with compliance. With TCPA Protect, your company receives not just the software, but also access to a team of experts who specialize in DNC and TCPA compliance. While DNC compliance is critical, TCPA compliance is just as important. TCPA Protect provides a cost-effective way to help to ensure your company is compliant with these critical, complex and evolving federal laws.

What Types of Businesses Don’t Need To Clean?

Depending on the type of business you do, you may not need to clean your contact list. The types of calls that can be made to numbers on the DNC list include:

  • Business-to-Business Calls: Your company can call another company for any reason, including to solicit a sale. Businesses are exempt from the Do Not Call list.
  • Informational Calls: Phone calls of a purely informative nature are allowed. For example, if an airline must cancel a flight, it can call customers to inform them about the cancellation, even if they are on the DNC list. 
  • Calls for Political Purposes: Calls to advertise a political party or for conducting political polls are exempt from the Do Not Call list.
  • Donation Requests from Charitable Organizations: Non-profit organizations are able to call numbers on the DNC list and ask for donations.
  • Calls for Debt Collection: Debt collectors can call DNC numbers to seek outstanding payments.
  • Consumers with whom there is an “Established Business Relationship” (“EBR”): A company can call customers with whom it has an EBR, even if their numbers are on the DNC list. There are two ways an EBR is created. First, if a customer has purchased a product or service from a company, the company can contact that customer for eighteen months after the purchase. Second, if a consumer has inquired about a company’s products or services, the company can contact that consumer for three months.
  • Consumers who have provided “Express Written Permission”: If a consumer has given a company her express written permission to make contact, the company can do so, even if the consumer’s number is on the DNC list.

Remember, with the last two exceptions, if a consumer asks not to be called again, his number must be added to the company’s own DNC list. Consumer preference overrides these exceptions.

What Else Does TCPA Protect DNC Cleaning Do?

While the primary goal of DNC cleaning is to make sure your company’s call list doesn’t include numbers on the DNC registry, it can have other uses. A bad number detector, for example, will scan your list in real-time and delete numbers that are the wrong format, non-existent, or that the carrier has disconnected. Calling only working numbers, of course, increases efficiency and reduces costs. Additionally, the TCPA Protect DNC cleaning software keeps track of its actions, which means that your company has proof of  its Do Not Call compliance. In short, a serious, legitimate business that wants to ensure it is giving the best experience to its customers along with maximizing potential profits, will work to remain TCPA compliant by following the telemarketing sales rules and DNC compliant by not calling registered numbers.