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BILL AS INTRODUCED 2007-2008

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H.306

Introduced by Representatives Kupersmith of S. Burlington, Bissonnette of Winooski, Botzow of Pownal, Davis of Washington, Kitzmiller of Montpelier, Livingston of Manchester, Marcotte of Coventry and Shand of Weathersfield

Referred to Committee on

Date:

Subject:  Commerce and trade; consumer fraud; telemarketing

Statement of purpose:  This bill proposes to amend the statute regulating telemarketing to facilitate reconstruction of what telemarketers say to consumers, reduce the loss of critical evidence, and moderate the standard of liability for entities such as third-party processors of telemarketing-based bank debits.

AN ACT RELATING TO TELEMARKETING

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  9 V.S.A. § 2464(a)(1) is amended to read:

(1)  “Express oral authorization” means that a consumer has explicitly authorized an electronic funds transfer from his or her financial account for goods or services offered by a telemarketer:

(A)  during a telephone call in which the telemarketer has clearly stated that the consumer is authorizing the transfer from his or her account, and has further stated the consumer’s name, a description of the specific goods or services offered, any material terms of the transaction, the date on or after which the account will be debited, the amount of the transfer, a telephone number for consumer inquiries that is answered during normal business hours, and the date of the authorization; and

(B)  where the telemarketer has either tape-recorded the consumer’s authorization as described in subdivision (A) of this subdivision (1) and not disposed of the recording until at least two four years after the authorization, or has provided written notice to the consumer, prior to the settlement date of the transfer, confirming the terms of the authorization as described in subdivision (A) of this subdivision (2), (1) and has not disposed of the written notice until at least four years after the notice was created.

Sec. 2.  9 V.S.A. § 2464(b)(2) is amended to read:

(2)  to obtain or submit for payment a check, draft, or other form of negotiable instrument drawn on a person’s financial account without the consumer’s prior written authorization or to dispose of the written authorization until at least four years after the authorization.


Sec. 3.  9 V.S.A. § 2464(c)(1) is amended to read:

(1)  a check, draft, or other form of negotiable instrument drawn on or debited against such account without the consumer’s prior written authorization or to dispose of the written authorization until at least four years after the authorization; or

Sec. 4.  9 V.S.A. § 2464(d) is amended to read:

(d)  In addition to the legal liability described in subsection (c) of this section, it is an unfair and deceptive act and practice in commerce for any person, including a third-party delivery, courier or other pickup service, or the telemarketer’s financial institution as defined in 8 V.S.A. § 10202(5), but not including the consumer’s financial institution as defined in 8 V.S.A.

§ 10202(5), to provide substantial assistance to a telemarketer in violation of subsection (b) of this section when the person or the person’s authorized agent knows or consciously avoids knowing should know that the telemarketer is engaging in an unfair or deceptive act or practice in commerce.

Sec. 5.  9 V.S.A. § 2464(e) is added to read:

(e)  It is an unfair and deceptive act and practice in commerce for a party who processes telemarketing transactions for payment from a consumer’s financial account to dispose of telemarketer applications or agreements, records of payments processed or returned, electronic communications relating


to telemarketers, consumer complaints, or any other category of record that the attorney general may prescribe by rule, until at least four years after the records were created.



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us