Lifewatch Busted For Robocalls… Again

Tim Marvin
Campaign Manager

Maureen Mahoney
Public Policy Fellow

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

If you are older you probably have gotten some sort of sales pitch from Lifewatch, they sell medical alert systems. Last year, their telemarketers were sued by the FTC and the Florida Attorney General for running a robocall scam and agreed to a ban on all robocalls. Lifewatch apparently didn’t learn the lesson.

Instead, they simply farmed out their robocalls to other telemarketing companies and kept the hustle going. So now the FTC and the Florida AG are suing Lifewatch.

From the FTC: Here’s a trifecta of misrepresentations the FTC says Lifewatch made in its telemarketing campaign:

  1. Your alert system has “already been paid for” by a friend or family member. Not true.
  2. The system is endorsed by major organizations like the American Heart Association or AARP. Nuh-uh.
  3. You won’t be charged anything until you activate the device, and you can cancel the service at any time without further payment. Not so much. Actually, Lifewatch charged people as soon as it got their account information. Then, they refused to let people cancel until the company got back the equipment or a $400 penalty.

As always, we applaud any enforcement on these shady companies by regulators. However, regulators simply cannot keep up with the many companies engaging in this sort of scam. That is why the FCC agreed with the campaign that telecos have the legal authority to block robocalls before they get to our homes. That is the only real solution is for the major carriers to start providing us with free effective tools to block robocalls.

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One response to “Lifewatch Busted For Robocalls… Again”

  1. alan bergman says:

    What bloody good does it do to ALLOW big telecoms to block robocalls? They’re interested only in their bottom line, selling calls & associated things, so who do you think they’re going to side with — businesses that pay them making robocalls or customers who have to bear the brunt of those calls?
    Maybe the FTC & Consumer Reports should publish a list of telecoms which have blocked robocalls …though i’d bet that’d be a blank page! Big business only listens when their bottom line is threatened or they’re TRULY regulated, so they must be forced to block robocalls or nothing will change.

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