It's only been a bit more than a week since a Manhattan federal judge ruled that Time-Warner Cable must pay $229,500 in damages to a Texas woman who received 153 automated calls on her cell phone in less than a year, even after she told Time-Warner they were calling the wrong person. (Indeed, TWC made 74 of those calls after the woman had already filed a lawsuit asking them to stop.)
Now, Philadelphia resident Kia Elder has filed a similar complaint against Comcast. The lawsuit, available in .pdf form here, alleges that “Beginning in late September 2014, and continuing through June 2015, Defendant [Comcast] repeatedly called Plaintiff [Elder] on her cellular phone …. us[ing] an automatic telephone dialing system and automated and/or pre-recorded messages.”
In late September, the lawsuit says, Elder spoke with a human Comcast representative, who told her the company was calling to collect a $527 bill. But Elder had actually paid the debt in 2011, and said so. Despite this, Comcast continued robocalling her: “From late September 2014, Defendant placed cellular calls to Plaintiff an average of once or twice each day. Calls continued at least through June 18, 2015.”
Like the suit against Time-Warner Cable, Elder's suit against Comcast is based on the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (a law intended to reign in abusive telemarketing practices, including robocalls), and asks for damages of $1,500 per call. The TCPA establishes a fine structure of $500 per call, with triple damages awarded for knowing or willful violations. Since Elder told Comcast last September that she'd paid off her debt three years earlier and did not consent to receive any more calls about the matter, she's seeking triple damages for every robocall Comcast made afterward.
If she's awarded the full $1,500 for every call she alleges Comcast made, the total damages could exceed $900,000.