Three More DNC Lists Now in Effect

New do-not-call lists in Indiana, Louisiana and Texas took effect on New Year's Day, expanding the list of states that give consumers the option to tune out most telemarketers.

Registration for the Louisiana and Texas lists began Jan. 1. Indiana has been pre-registering consumers since the summer and has signed up more than 200,000 households.

Louisiana's DNC list law is perhaps the harshest on telemarketers in that it requires them to post a $20,000 bond — in addition to paying $400 for the list — before operating in the state. Telemarketers face fines of up to $1,500 per violation of the list.

The law exempts nonprofit, debt collection, business-to-business and political calls. Consumers can register for no charge by calling a toll-free number or going online. The Louisiana DNC list is available on CD-ROM or by Internet.

Provisions of the other two states' DNC list laws include:

• In Indiana, the state charges telemarketers $300 a year for the list, published quarterly and available in CD-ROM, floppy disk and e-mail format. Exemptions include calls made by charitable organizations, newspapers, licensed insurance agents and licensed real estate brokers. Consumers can register for the DNC list at no charge. Penalties for violations include $10,000 on the first offense and $25,000 on subsequent offenses.

• In Texas, the state charges telemarketers $45 per quarter for the list in CD-ROM and downloadable formats. The first list will be available April 1. Exemptions include business-to-business calls, debt collection and state licensees not using auto dialers. Consumers can register by phone, mail and online for a $2.25 charge for three years. Violators face fines of up to $1,000 per violation.

Telemarketers can expect three other state DNC lists to be in effect as of Jan. 1, 2003. Legislatures in California, Colorado and Wisconsin passed DNC lists during 2001 and will work on getting them ready during the coming year.

Colorado's list takes effect July 1. California's list is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1, 2003. Wisconsin's list will be effective pending the publication of the state DNC's rules by the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

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