The U.S. Supreme Court held oral arguments for Facebook v. Duguid (Case 19-511), which began as a Lemberg Law class action lawsuit and poses a central question relating to the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act: What constitutes an automatic telephone dialing system?
Arguing on Mr. Duguid’s behalf was renowned scholar Bryan Garner, the editor of Black’s Law Dictionary and a noted lexicographer, who made his SCOTUS debut last Tuesday.
The issue of concern follows the interpretation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)’s definition of an Automatic Telephone Dialing System (ATDS). The 1991 federal law restricts telemarketing calls and the use of ATDS for common carriers and other marketers.
“Accepting Facebook’s reading would gut the TCPA and expose all of us to billions of unwanted robocalls and text messages sent with or without consent. We trust the Supreme Court saw that and will rule our way,” said Managing Attorney Sergei Lemberg, Duguid’s lead lawyer, in a statement to Law & Crime following oral arguments.
If Lemberg Law prevails, consumers can count on stronger TCPA protections that give them the opportunity to hold robocallers accountable.
The Supreme Court’s ruling is expected to be issued by June 2021.