Earlier this week, a California plaintiff filed a class action lawsuit against NASCAR alleging that the company violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (the "TCPA") by sending unsolicited text messages. The plaintiff argues that although she never asked to receive text messages from NASCAR, the company sent her a message advertising a mobile app that would enable her to watch races on her phone. The plaintiff seeks up to $1,500 in damages for each message in violation of the TCPA, which, when aggregated among a proposed class numbering tens of thousands, exceeds $5 million.
As we’ve noted before, courts have repeatedly held that companies must obtain express consent before they send text messages to consumers. Although it’s too early to tell whether NASCAR did anything wrong, this case serves as a reminder that failure to get consent is likely to lead to lawsuits. And once a company finds itself in one of these lawsuits, it can be very expensive to get out.