what are the laws regarding SPAM text messages?

We’ve all been there before; minding our own business or aimlessly scrolling through social media when a text comes through from an unknown number. You open it, wondering who could be texting you. Is it  an old friend? Is it work related? Is it that cute person you gave your number to at a Starbucks? The anticipation builds in the split second it takes your smartphone to load the message.

No. It is some company you’ve likely never heard of trying to sell you some product or service by overusing exclamation points and using words like EXCLUSIVE  or LIMITED TIME OFFER. The initial excitement of receiving that text message ding or vibration quickly fades, replaced by annoyance and frustration. Why is this company sending you a text message? How did they get your number? You never consented to them to message you, let alone solicit you to give them your hard earned money. For many, this nuisance is a common problem. It is invasive, annoying and…illegal.

So what can you do about these unwanted text messages? What are your rights? What are your remedies? lowercase is here to help.

why are these SPAM texts illegal?

There is something called the TCPA that specifically outlines the restrictions for telemarketers and debt collectors using automated dialing and pre-recorded messages for marketing outreach. This law is applicable to the following communication mediums:

  • Cellular Phones
  • Residential Phones or “Land Lines”
  • Text Messages
  • Faxes

learn more about the TCPA here:

Signed into law in 1991, the Telephonic Consumer Protection Act 47 U.S.C § 227 (“TCPA”) protects people such as yourself from receiving certain types of unsolicited telephonic communications. Originally created to restrict the ways and times that telemarketers could contact people at their homes, the Act has evolved slightly over the years as technology has advanced and smart phones have become a staple of modern society. As people increasingly communicate via text messages instead of phone calls, The TCPA was modified to make sure consumers’ privacy was protected. An “SMS message” (or as we call it, a text) is considered to be a call for purposes of the TCPA.

The TCPA protects consumers from “robo calls” or “Automatic Telephone Dialing System” (“ATDS”). These text messages, which are transmitted en mass, are considered to be ATDS and consumers are provided the same protection. These text messages are considered unsolicited advertisements. If you haven’t given a company prior express permission to contact you, you don’t have an established business relationship with this company, and the company isn’t a tax exempt non-profit organization, then the text message is considered a telephone solicitation in violation of the TCPA. If you receive one of these messages in violation of the TCPA, then you may be entitled to an award of $500.00 in statutory damages and an injunction preventing the company from sending you these unwanted messages. If it is determined that the violation of the TCPA is willful, you may be entitled to up to $1,500.00 in compensation.

An additional consideration for TCPA violations is the recipient’s Do-Not-Call Registry status. If you are receiving unsolicited communications from businesses or telemarketers despite being listed on the Do-Not-Call Registry, you should immediately gather evidence of the wrongdoing.  

  • 1) See Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 911, CG Docket No. 02-278, Report and Order, 18 FCC Red 14014, 14115 ¶ 165 (2003); https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/FCC-03-153A1.pdf
  • 2) 47 U.S.C § 227 (a)(1)
  • 3) 47 U.S.C. § 227 (b)(3)(B)
  • 4) 47 U.S.C. § 227 (b)(3)

what to do when you get one of those annoying SPAM texts?

Once you’ve received unwanted communications, documenting the evidence of a TCPA violation is essential to receiving compensation for your troubles as well as discouraging illegal communications via punitive damages. Here are the steps you should follow to document evidence of a violation:

  • Save the text message, never delete it.
  • Take a screenshot of the text message and text it to 833.569.3335 or email it to info@lowercaselaw.com.
  • We will refer you to one of our experienced attorneys who will follow up with you for a free review and consultation.

am I eligible for compensation?

You may be, but each case is different. Call or text us at 833.569.3335, or e-mail us at info@lowercaselaw.com for a free consultation to find out if you are entitled to compensation.

SPAM text? lowercase next.


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