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National Do Not Call List

a) Unsolicited Telecommunication Rules:

National Do Not Call List (DNCL) Rules:

The Telemarketing and Automatic Dialing-Announcing Device (ADAD) Rules apply to all telemarketers including those making calls exempt from the National DNCL Rules, with the exception of telemarketers using voice mail broadcast (where a solicitation message is left directly in your voice mailbox).  

The National DNCL Rules do not apply to certain types of unsolicited calls such as calls made by or on behalf of any of the following organizations:

  • registered charities;
  • political parties;
  • nomination contestants, leadership contestants or candidates of a political party;
  • opinion polling firms or market research firms conducting surveys when the call does not involve the sale of a product or service;
  • general circulation newspapers calling for the purpose of selling a subscription;
  • to consumer who has an existing business relationship with the organization; and
  • to business consumers.

Some of the Telemarketing Rules differ, depending on whether the telemarketing call is by telephone or fax. As a minimum, all telemarketers and clients of telemarketers are required to keep their own do not call lists, even if the calls they make are exempt from the National DNCL requirements. Telemarketers and clients of telemarketers must identify who they are and provide consumers with a fax or telephone number where the consumers can speak to a responsible person about the telemarketing call.

The Unsolicited Telecommunications Rules do not apply to calls made for the purpose of opinion polling, market research, surveys or calls to collect overdue accounts.  These types of calls are not considered solicitation for money or money's worth.

As well, if an organization has done business with a consumer in the last 18 months, it is free to call that individual even if he or she has registered their number on the National DNCL.

Telemarketing Rules:

Faxes:   

  • Fax telemarketing calls are restricted to weekdays (Monday to Friday) between 9:00 AM and 9:30 PM and weekends (Saturday and Sunday) between 10:00 AM and 6:00 PM.  Restrictions hours refer to the time zone of the customer receiving the fax telemarketing calls.
  • The following information must be provided on top of the first page in font size 12 or larger
    • The name of the telemarketer whether it is sending the fax on its own behalf or on behalf of a client of the telemarketer.
    • The name of the telemarketer's client where applicable.
    • The originating date and time of the fax.
    • A local or toll-free number voice and fax number allowing the customer access to an employee or other representative of the telemarketer, and where applicable, the client of the telemarketer, for the purpose of asking questions or making a do not call request.
    • The name and address of an employee or other representative of the telemarketer, or client where applicable, to whom the consumer can write.
  • For any telephone numbers provided to the consumer to call
    • The telephone call shall be answered either by a live operator or a voicemail system to take messages for the consumer.
    • The voicemail must inform consumers that their call will be returned within three (3) business days.
    • The telemarketer or the client of the telemarketer must return consumer's call within three (3) business days.
  • The fax telemarketing call must display the originating calling number or an alternate number where the call originator can be reached (except where the number display is unavailable for technical reasons).
  • Sequential dialing is prohibited.
  • Fax telemarketing calls are not permitted to any emergency line or healthcare facility.
  • DNCLs are to be maintained by the telemarketer on its own behalf or on behalf of a client of a telemarketer and remain active for three (3) years effective within thirty-one (31) days from the date of the consumer's do not call request.

Telephone Calls:

  • Calling hours are restricted to weekdays (Monday to Friday) between 9:00 AM and 9:30 PM and weekends (Saturday and Sunday) between 10:00 AM and 6:00 PM.  Restrictions hours refer to the time zone of the customer receiving the telephone calls.
  • At the beginning of a call a telemarketer
    • Must identify the name or fictitious name of the individual placing the call.
    • Must identify the name of the telemarketer whether calling on its own behalf or on behalf of a client of the telemarketer.
    • The telemarketer must provide the purpose of the call (if the call is exempt from the National DNCL Rules).
  • Upon request a telemarketer must
    • provide a local or toll-free number allowing the customer access to speak to an employee or other representative of the telemarketer and where applicable, its client;
    • provide the name and address of an employee or other representative of the telemarketer and where applicable, its client, to whom the consumer can write.
  • For any telephone numbers provided to a consumer
    • The telephone call shall be answered either by a live operator or a voicemail system to take messages for the consumer. The voicemail must inform consumers that their call will be returned within three (3) business days.
    • The telemarketer or the client of the telemarketer must return consumer's call within three (3) business days.
  • Telemarketers must display the originating calling number or an alternate number where the call originator can be reached (except where the number display is unavailable for technical reasons).
  • Sequential dialing is prohibited.
  • Random dialing and calls to non-published numbers are permitted, except to numbers that are registered on the National DNCL; are emergency lines; and are associated with healthcare facilities.
  • DNCLs are to be maintained by the telemarketer on its own behalf or on behalf of a client of a telemarketer and remain active for three (3) years effective within thirty-one (31) days from the date of the consumer's do not call request.
  • A consumer's request not to be called that is made during the telemarketing call shall be processed at that time. The consumer shall not be asked to call elsewhere to make their request.
  • A telemarketer using a predictive dialing device to initiate a call shall not exceed, in any calendar month, a five (5) percent abandonment rate. The telemarketer and or its client shall maintain records of actual abandonment rates for a period of three (3) years from the date each monthly record is created.

Automatic Dialing and Announcing Devices (ADADs):

ADADs are equipment that store and dial telephone numbers automatically. They may be used alone or with other devices to deliver a pre-recorded or synthesized voice message to the telephone number called.

ADADs used for the purpose of solicitation are prohibited. This prohibition includes telemarketing via an ADAD that is initiated by or on behalf of a charity, for the purpose of requesting a consumer to hold until a telemarketer is available, for activities such as radio station promotions, or for referring consumers to 900 or 976 service numbers.

ADADs are permitted when there is no attempt to sell, such as:

  • Unsolicited telecommunications made via an ADAD for public service reasons, including telecommunications made for emergency and administration purposes by police and fire departments, schools, hospitals, or for calls to schedule appointments.

A person using an ADAD to make permitted telecommunications, shall comply with the following conditions:

  • Calling hours are restricted to weekdays (Monday to Friday)  from 9:00 AM to   9.30 PM and 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM on weekends (Saturday and Sunday); the hours refer to those of the person receiving the telecommunication. These hours do not apply to emergency situation announcements.
  • The ADAD call shall begin with a clear message identifying the person on whose behalf the call is made.  This identification message shall include a mailing address and a local or toll-free telecommunications number at which a representative of the originator of the message can be reached.  In the event that the actual message relayed exceeds sixty (60) seconds, the identification message shall be repeated at the end of the telecommunication.
  • ADAD calls shall display the originating telecommunications number or an alternate telecommunications number where the call originator can be reached (except where the number display is unavailable for technical reasons).
  • Sequential dialing is prohibited.
  • Random dialing can be used to non-published telecommunications numbers, except to emergency lines and healthcare facilities.
  • Persons initiating ADAD calls shall make all reasonable efforts to ensure that their equipment disconnects within ten (10) seconds of the person receiving the call hanging up.

b) How to Register on the DNCL:

Consumers can register any Residential Canadian telephone number on the National DNCL. This includes landlines, wireless, VoIP, satellite, cellular telephone, or a fax machine numbers.

You can register through the following ways:

  • Online at: www.LNNTE-DNCL.gc.ca
  • Phone: 1-866-580-DNCL (3625)
  • Via TTY device: 1-888-362-5889
  • Fax your fax number to: 1-888-362-5329

If you are registering by phone or by fax you must call from the telephone number you are registering.

c) How to file a complaint about a telemarketing communication:

If you have registered for the National DNCL, and you still receive calls from organizations that are not exempt, then you will be able to file a complaint.

Complaints about the National DNCL Rules or Telemarketing Rules may be submitted online at www.LNNTE-DNCL.gc.ca or by phone at 1-866-580-DNCL (3625).