On Tuesday, Senator Brad Hoylman and Assembly Member Yuh-Line Niou announced that a bill of theirs aimed at banning robo-calls in the state of New York has passed in the Senate Committee.
The Robocall Prevention Act came in response to the scourge of the record number of robocalls placed in 2018, a total of 47.8 billion nationwide.
If signed into law, the RPA would:
- Prohibit any person or entity from making robocalls to any telephone number owned by a person in New York State, unless for emergency purposes or with the prior express consent of the call recipient;
- Require telephone service companies to have technology available that would block unwanted robocalls, free of charge to the consumer;
- Give the State Attorney General new enforcement powers on robocalls and authorize new civil penalties of up to $2,000 per robocall, up to $20,000 for calls placed in violation of the law within a continuous 72-hour period; and
- Grant New Yorkers a private right of action to go after violators themselves, and allow courts to award treble damages for those who knowingly violate the law.
“There isn’t an issue I hear more about from constituents than the proliferation of robocalls,” said Hoylman. “These calls aren’t just annoying — they’re dangerous, and often used to defraud unsuspecting consumers, seniors, and vulnerable New Yorkers.”
Hoylman first sponsored legislation last May.