IIABA’s Agents Council for Technology (ACT), in conjunction with the Big “I” Office of the General Counsel, is now offering members a sample text messaging opt-in form and sample terms and conditions to help agents meet the requirements of the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
FCC regulations say that an established prior business relationship does not exempt you from needing prior express written consent before sending commercial text messages. Even when they're one-on-one. Even when the client texts you first! Get your copy of sample text messaging opt-in form and terms & conditions from ACT. You must login.
Text messaging gives independent agents a quick and simple way to communicate with clients, on an individual or aggregate basis, regarding policy reminders, new product offerings, and risk management tips. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has broadly interpreted the TCPA to regulate nearly all text messaging. The FCC’s interpretation of the TCPA appears to cover all commercial text messages even if they are sent to one person rather than multiple recipients.
Additionally, unlike the rules for some other commercial communications, the FCC has ordered that an existing business relationship does not provide an exemption to the TCPA requirements of obtaining prior express written consent before sending commercial text messages.
Therefore, agents should ask clients to opt in to text messaging and provide messaging terms and conditions, even if the agency communicates via text only with existing or prospective clients or when texts are initiated by the client or prospective client. Agents also need to understand the capabilities of their agency management system for text messaging.