On April 9, Jorge Valdes from Tustin, California, filed a complaint against Coldwell Banker Real Estate and NRT asking the court to stop the companies from directing real estate professionals to call consumers without their consent – a violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.
The lawsuit alleges that the defendants are making unsolicited, automatically dialed calls to consumers that violate the Federal Trade Commission's National Do Not Call Registry.
Valdes alleges in the complaint that the real estate companies provide specific instructions to their real estate professionals to call expired listings – consumers who previously listed their properties for sale with other real estate professionals. Valdes also alleges that the companies instruct real estate professionals to make unsolicited cold calls to obtain new listings, and that the companies provide agents with telephone numbers and other analytics to identify leads, as well as scripts to guide the conversations.
The lawsuit questions the technology services that are helping real estate professionals gain numbers to call.
Valdes says in the complaint that he received unwanted autodialed calls from three different Coldwell Banker and NRT real estate professionals to his cell phone, which is registered on the Do Not Call list. Valdes had a property listed on the MLS in 2018 with a real estate professional, but the listing was removed after his home did not sell. He says his cell phone number was never associated with any of the publicly listed information about the property.
Valdes' class-action lawsuit stretches to anyone who has also received unsolicited calls over the past four years from the companies. The complaint is seeking a jury trial and a minimum of $500 in damages and up to $1,500 in damages for each violation.
Coldwell Banker and NRT have released the following joint statement in response:
Source: REALTOR® Magazine