Florida Senate - 2022 CS for SB 1564 By the Committee on Commerce and Tourism; and Senator Hutson 577-02247-22 20221564c1 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to telephone solicitation; amending s. 3 501.059, F.S.; redefining terms; conforming a 4 provision to changes made by the act; authorizing the 5 use of automated telephone dialing systems with live 6 messages in response to certain inquiries; providing a 7 limitation; revising provisions for the award of 8 attorney fees and costs; providing for retroactive 9 application; providing an effective date. 10 11 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 12 13 Section 1. Paragraphs (g) and (k) of subsection (1), 14 paragraph (a) of subsection (8), and subsection (11) of section 15 501.059, Florida Statutes, are amended, and paragraph (e) is 16 added to subsection (8) of that section, to read: 17 501.059 Telephone solicitation.— 18 (1) As used in this section, the term: 19 (g) “Prior express written consent” means a written 20 agreement that: 21 1. Bears the signature of the called party; 22 2. Clearly authorizes the person making or allowing the 23 placement of a telephonic sales call by telephone call, text 24 message, or voicemail transmission to deliver or cause to be 25 delivered to the called party a telephonic sales call using an 26 automated system for the selection and
ordialing of telephone 27 numbers, the playing of a recorded message when a connection is 28 completed to a number called, the transmission of a text 29 message, or the transmission of a prerecorded voicemail; 30 3. Includes the telephone number to which the signatory 31 authorizes a telephonic sales call to be delivered; and 32 4. Includes a clear and conspicuous disclosure informing 33 the called party that: 34 a. By executing the agreement, the called party authorizes 35 the person making or allowing the placement of a telephonic 36 sales call to deliver or cause to be delivered a telephonic 37 sales call to the called party using an automated system for the 38 selection and ordialing of telephone numbers or the playing of 39 a recorded message when a connection is completed to a number 40 called; and 41 b. He or she is not required to directly or indirectly sign 42 the written agreement or to agree to enter into such an 43 agreement as a condition of purchasing any property, goods, or 44 services. 45 (k) “Unsolicited telephonic sales call” means a telephonic 46 sales call other than a call made: 47 1. Within 120 days after In response toan express request 48 of the personcalled party; 49 2. Primarily in connection with an existing debt or 50 contract, if payment or performance of such debt or contract has 51 not been completed at the time of such call; 52 3. To a person with whom the telephone solicitor has a 53 prior or existing business relationship; or54 4. By a newspaper publisher or his or her agent or employee 55 in connection with his or her business; or 56 5. Limited to polling or soliciting the expression of 57 ideas, opinions, or votes, including when such polling or 58 soliciting is made by text message. 59 (8)(a) A person may not make or knowingly allow a 60 telephonic sales call to be made if such call involves an 61 automated system for the selection and ordialing of telephone 62 numbers or the playing of a recorded message when a connection 63 is completed to a number called without the prior express 64 written consent of the called party. 65 (e) This subsection does not prohibit the use of an 66 automated telephone dialing system with live messages or text 67 messages if the call or message is made solely in response to an 68 inquiry initiated by the called party. However, only two such 69 calls or messages may be made in response to each inquiry. 70 (11)(a) In any civil litigation resulting from a 71 transaction involving aviolation of this section, the 72 prevailing party, after judgment in the trial court and 73 exhaustion of all appeals, if any, shall receive his or her 74 reasonable attorney attorney’sfees and costs from the 75 nonprevailing party. 76 (b) The attorney for the prevailing party shall submit a 77 sworn affidavit of his or her time spent on the case and his or 78 her costs incurred for all the motions, hearings, and appeals to 79 the trial judge who presided over the civil case. 80 (c) The trial judge shall award the prevailing party the 81 sum of reasonable costs incurred in the action plus a reasonable 82 legal fee for the hours actually spent on the case as sworn to 83 in an affidavit. 84 (d) Any award of attorney attorney’sfees or costs shall 85 become a part of the judgment and subject to execution as the 86 law allows. 87 (e) In any civil litigation initiated by the department or 88 the Department of Legal Affairs, the court may award to the 89 prevailing party reasonable attorney attorney’sfees and costs 90 if the court finds that there was a complete absence of a 91 justiciable issue of either law or fact raised by the losing 92 party or if the court finds bad faith on the part of the losing 93 party. 94 Section 2. The amendments made by this act to s. 501.059, 95 Florida Statutes, are remedial in nature and apply retroactively 96 to July 1, 2021, and to any proceeding pending or commenced on 97 or after July 1, 2021. 98 Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2022.