California office company subject to $252k fine for junk faxes

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has proposed forfeiture penalties in the amount of $252,000 against a California office supply company for sending unsolicited faxes.

Issued in July 2011, the Notice of Apparent Liability cites Los Angeles-based Laser Technologies (also doing business as Laser Tech) for delivering 40 unsolicited fax advertisements for ink and toner supplies to 28 separate consumers. The Notice follows the issuance of a Citation against the company in December 2006. The company never responded to the Citation, but reportedly continued to send unwanted faxes to consumers.

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 makes it “unlawful for any person within the United States…to use any telephone facsimile machine, computer, or other device to send, to a telephone facsimile machine, an unsolicited advertisement.” Violations of the FCC regulations regarding these so-called junk faxes can result in monetary fines of up to $16,000 per violation.

In this case, the Commission cited Laser Technologies for willful and repeated violations of its junk fax regulations, levying $4500 fines for each of the 36 instances in which the company sent faxes before receiving the FCC Citation, and an additional $10,000 for each of the four instances of faxes sent after receipt of the Citation.  The Commission also increased the total fine by an additional $50,000 for “repeated or continuous violation” of the Commission’s rules, bringing the total proposed forfeiture to $252,000.

Read the complete text of the Commission’s Forfeiture Order against Laser Technology.