Houston Home Improvement Contractor Cited For Violating Texas No-Call

AUSTIN - Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today resolved an enforcement action against a Houston home improvement contractor who made unsolicited telemarketing calls to Texans whose telephone numbers appear on the "Texas No-Call list."

Thomas S. Carmichael, who does business as Discount Construction, is prohibited from continuing to make the unsolicited calls in the future. He must pay $10,000 in attorneys' fees and $5,000 in civil penalties for violating the Texas Telemarketing Disclosure and Privacy Act, also known as the Texas No-Call law. The 2001 law allows Texans to register their telephone numbers on a list that telemarketers are generally prohibited from calling.

Carmichael agreed to stop calling Texans whose phone numbers are on the No-Call list, unless a prior business relationship existed with them. He also must ensure that no other telemarketers contact No-Call list numbers on behalf of Discount Construction. Carmichael routinely solicited business from Texans on the No-Call list even if they had no prior dealings with his business.

The Texas No-Call registry was first made available in January 2002. Effective July of that year, telemarketers were prohibited from contacting numbers that appeared on the registry. In 2003, the Texas Legislature passed a law permitting Texans to add their cell phone numbers to this list.

Texans whose telephone numbers are on the No-Call list and receive unsolicited telemarketing calls from businesses may file complaints with the Office of the Attorney General by calling toll-free, (800) 252-8011. Complaints may also be filed online with the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC) at www.puc.state.tx.us/ocp/complaints/secure/nocallform.cfm or by calling toll-free at (888) 782-8477. Texans who wish to enroll in the No-Call program may call toll-free at (866) 896-6225 or sign up online at www.texasnocall.com.