States Publish Lists of Companies Registered as Telemarketers

Why do companies that attempt to comply with laws have to compete with companies that don’t?  Some states have taken action to level the playing field, at least when it comes to telemarketing registrations, by making public, and easily accessible on the internet, lists of companies which have registered in their state.

Nearly half of states require registration for telephone solicitors.  These registrations can apply to both sellers of merchandise and companies which make calls on their behalf (e.g. outsourced phone companies, either inbound or outbound).

The following states make databases of these registered companies available online: Alaska[1], Arizona[2], Florida[3], Maine[4], New York[5], Utah[6], Vermont[7], and Washington[8].

The majority of states (which require registration) still do not publish this information, including: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, District of Columbia, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, West Virginia, and Wyoming.  However, you likely could obtain the information with a Freedom of Information Act (or similar state statute) request.

So, when faced with a registration requirement, you may have wondered if your competition is also required to register. Well, at least in some states, you can now find out if they have registered or not. Lack of registration, however, does not show a violation of law, as many states’ laws contain multiple exemptions based on the goods or services sold, the publicly-traded or regulated status of the company, or other factors, but that’s a topic for another day.

[1] See Telemarketers Registered with the Alaska Department of Law, Alaska Department of Law Consumer Protection Unit (last visited April 27, 2015) http://www.law.alaska.gov/department/civil/consumer/cp_telemarketing.html

[2] See Search Telephonic Sellers, Arizona Secretary of State (last visited April 27, 2015) http://apps.azsos.gov/scripts/nph-TS_Search_engine.exe

[3] See Business/Complaint Lookup, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (last visited April 27, 2015) https://csapp.800helpfla.com/CSPublicApp/BusinessSearch/BusinessSearch.aspx

[4] See Regulation of Transient Sales, State of Maine Professional & Financial Regulation (last visited April 27, 2015) http://maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing/professions/transient_sellers/olr_updates.html

[5] See Licensee Business Name Search, New York Department of State, Division of Licensing Services (last visited April 27, 2015) http://appext20.dos.ny.gov/lcns_public/bus_name_search_frm

[6] See Registered Entity Search, Utah Department of Commerce Division of Consumer Protection (last visited April 27, 2015) http://consumerprotection.utah.gov/consumerinfo/lists.html?list=TEL

[7] See Licensee Lookup, Vermont Secretary of State (last visited April 27, 2015) https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/licensee-lookup.aspx

[8] See Look Up a Business or Professional License, Washington State Department of Licensing (last visited April 27, 2015) http://www.dol.wa.gov/business/checkstatus.html