An Indiana state law banning a variety of automated telephone calls was given new life as a federal appeals court concluded that the law was not preempted by federal law. In a decision released late on Thursday, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago said a lower court judge erred in concluding that the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act supplanted Indiana’s law regulating the calls. It directed the lower court to consider whether the Indiana law violates callers’ free speech rights under the 1st Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Automated calling often prompts complaints because they are considered annoying or raise privacy concerns. According to the 7th Circuit, the Federal Trade Commission fields more than 200,000 complaints a month about automated marketing, or “autodialer,” calls.
The Indiana law had been challenged by Patriotic Veterans Inc, an Illinois-based nonprofit political advocacy group that sought to tell voters about politicians’ positions on issues that matter to veterans.
Employing people like the singer Pat Boone to deliver its messages, the group used a service capable of delivering as many as 100,000 messages in three hours, court papers show.
The group sought a court ruling that the Indiana law was invalid as it applied to political messages.
Full Article: Indiana robocall ban not preempted by federal law | Reuters.