For Immediate Release - May 24, 2004

State Consumer Affairs Director Applauds Recent State SJC Ruling on Unwanted Solicitations

State Consumer Affairs Director Applauds Recent State SJC Ruling on Unwanted Solicitations

Massachusetts Consumer Affairs Director Beth Lindstrom today cited Friday's unanimous ruling by the seven-member panel of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in the matter of Thomas Mulhern vs. John G. MacLeod as a victory for consumers who have been aggrieved by unwanted solicitations.

Director Lindstrom characterized the ruling as an affirmation of consumers' rights to turn to the state courts to safeguard their federal rights under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991. "If there were any doubts about enforcing a consumer's federal anti-solicitation rights in a state court, those doubts have been dispelled. Consumers can have confidence that their rights can be enforced right here in Massachusetts," Lindstrom said.

The case heard by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court involved a consumer who had written to a Massachusetts-based mortgage company requesting that it cease sending unsolicited mortgage advertisements to him by fax. A civil action filed by the plaintiff in Superior Court in October 2002 was dismissed, but the Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review and reversed the lower court dismissal.