Palm Beach County resident Ryan Millward filed the suit against So Flo Real Estate Group in Miami federal court, the Real Deal reports. He has asked for class action status and accuses a broker of sending him several unsolicited telemarketing texts asking him to read articles about homebuying on their website.
Sent on Oct. 9, the first text reportedly reads: “Hi Ryan, I found this article and I want to share it with you. Let me know what you think.” The second was sent on Dec. 11 and reportedly reads “Hi Ryan, guess what most Americans are saying about home ownership and check out the entire South and Central Florida housing inventory for free at www.soflorealestategroup.com.” Both include links to articles on the website.
While the messages may seem harmless, Millward alleges that So Flo Real Estate Group violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by placing him in a database of numbers and sending him messages without his permission. Millward’s lawyers, Garrett Berg and Scott Edelsberg, regularly represent clients with similar complaints against brokerages — including one filed against Pembroke Pines-based RE/MAX Presidential and Celebration-based La Rosa Realty in the fall.
To avoid getting in trouble with the law, agents who send marketing messages to clients need to show that they received “affirmative consent” — the person you’re contacting with marketing material needs to have previously agreed to or explicitly signed up to receive texts or emails from you. More than 200 million people have also placed themselves on the National Do Not Call (DNC) registry. Contacting their numbers is also illegal.
So Flo Real Estate Group did not immediately respond to a request for comment.