Global Tel-Link (GTL) settled a class action lawsuit in March 2017 for $8.8 million dollars. The lawsuit alleged that the company made “robocalls” to their cell phones without permission and thus violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991.
The plaintiffs alleged that GTL, the nation’s leading provider of inmate telecommunication services, attempted to connect calls to their cell phones. When the calls from prisoners could not connect, the cell phone user received a pre-recorded message to notify them that an inmate had tried to contact. The lawsuit stated that “protections granted by Congress under the TCPA was the only means of protecting consumers from unwanted nuisance calls.”
The class included nearly two million people who had received calls from GTL to their cell phones from December 2010 until the settlement was agreed upon in the courtroom. Watch this video about GTL on Youtube.
Global Tel-Link provides inmate calling services to more than 30 states in the U.S., as well as Puerto Rico. GTL has been in the news over the course of recent years and the defendant of many lawsuits. The rate which GTL charges inmates and those they communicate with have been the subject of most of the lawsuits. Inmates, their loved ones, and associates allegedly paid as much as $13.00 for 10 minutes of talk time. The FCC attempted to challenge GTL by placing a federal regulation to cap the cost of inmate calling services but later dropped the suit.
GTL administered some changes to reflect consumer needs. The company’s website lists that inmates would need to set up an account, which costs $4.75. The fees for inmate calling services in California vary, depending on the type of facility and whether the call was pre-paid or collect. Read more on nytimes.com to know more about GTL.
These charges are separate from the fees that the recipient of the call must pay.