Washingtonians will have additional protection from unwanted phone solicitations thanks to changes to state law that go into effect June 9.

The changes, which govern the behavior of marketing callers, follow Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s campaign against illegal robomarketing calls in the state.

In February 2022, the Federal Trade Commission received 6,075 complaints from Washingtonians regarding telephone solicitations. Key provisions of the amended law will make it easier for consumers to recognize and end these calls.

Among other provisions, the law redefines telephone solicitation as a call made to a “person” rather than a “residential telephone customer”.

Additionally, telemarketers will need to identify themselves, the business they represent, and the purpose of the call within the first 30 seconds. They must also end the call within 10 seconds if a recipient requests the end of the call.

Telemarketing calls will not be permitted after 8:00 p.m. or before 8:00 a.m. in the recipients’ time zone.

When consumers request not to be called in the future, telemarketers should inform them that their contact information will be removed from the call list for at least one year, end the call within 10 seconds, and avoid call “any phone number associated with that party” for one year.

Earlier this year, Attorney General Ferguson took several steps to crack down on illegal phone calls that use computerized autodialers to transmit pre-recorded messages, better known as robocalls.

In March, Ferguson launched a new complaint form for reporting robocalls and a new website detailing how to recognize robocalls and other possible telemarketing scams, as well as methods to stop robocalls.

In April, the Attorney General announced a partnership between Washington and the Federal Communications Commission to share information and cooperate in the investigation of illegal phone calls that use computerized autodialers to transmit pre-recorded messages.

Over the past two years, the attorney general’s office has shut down at least three robocalls responsible for nearly 15 million spam calls in Washington.

State law allows telemarketing calls when a consumer has made a transaction or inquiry with a seller. A transaction-based business relationship exception lasts for 12 months from the date of the last purchase.