Advisory Counsel on TCPA Litigation
- As an attorney and advisory counsel, Mr. Hoffman has an abiding interest in the law, regulation and policy surrounding the TCPA, including implementation, compliance and enforcement matters. Today, he provides high-level strategic and communications counsel to companies and attorneys involved in TCPA litigation. Mr. Hoffman served at the FCC from 2013-2015 as Chief of Staff and Senior Legal Advisor to FCC Commissioner Clyburn. During his time at the agency, Hoffman became one of the leading experts on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
Review of TCPA as FCC Official
- Hoffman's expertise on TCPA derives from service as chief of staff and senior legal advisor to FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn (2013-2015), where he was made painfully aware of the negative effect the TCPA was having on the ability of American companies to communicate reasonably and regularly with their clients and customers. As part of the FCC’s review, Hoffman met with dozens of companies that stood to be affected by narrow interpretations of the TCPA. His concerns were confirmed by the Commission’s 2015 TCPA Omnibus Order and its subsequent interpretation of the statute contrary to the interests of many corporations and small business enterprises.
Coined the Phrase: TCPA – Total Cash for Plaintiffs’ Attorneys
- Upon leaving the FCC in 2015, Hoffman gave an exit interview to Broadcasting & Cable magazine noting:
- "Businesses face regulatory challenges every day that were not intended by Congress or the FCC. Look at the TCPA—the Telephone Consumer Protection Act—for example. This consumer protection, anti-telemarketing statute has been leveraged by aggressive plaintiffs’ lawyers to line their pockets lavishly with millions, while consumers usually get peanuts. The proliferation of class-action litigation involving the TCPA has reached an outlandish level. I think the TCPA should be known by its real acronym--“Total Cash for Plaintiffs’ Attorneys.” This is just one example where the public interest is not being advanced responsibly." -Adonis Hoffman, Broadcasting & Cable, March 23, 2015.
First to Criticize TCPA Abuse in Major Media
- In June 2015, Hoffman published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, warning companies that the FCC was on the verge of interpreting certain language in the TCPA to be contrary to ordinary practices in the market, and in effect, giving a clear path for the plaintiffs’ bar to succeed in future TCPA class actions. This was one of the first articles in major media to address problems with TCPA.
Cited by FCC Chairman Pai in the 2015 Omnibus Order
- Hoffman's article was cited in then-FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai’s dissent in the 2015 Omnibus TCPA Order. That portent has come true, as class action settlements against banks, retailers, educational institutions, utility companies, restaurants, service providers and others have reached staggering numbers. Later that year, he established a dedicated website, TCPAFacts.org, to highlight the myths versus the facts around enforcement of TCPA.
Testimony in the United States Senate on TCPA Lawsuit Abuse
- On October 22, 2015, Hoffman testified at a U.S. Senate Staff Briefing on TCPA sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for Legal Reform (ILR), the Professional Association for Customer Engagement (PACE) and the Newspaper Association of America. Also, in October 2015, Hoffman presented a paper on TCPA Abuse at the annual meeting of the Electronic Discovery Institute. Earlier that year, he commented on one of the most egregious abuses of the TCPA for Faces of Lawsuit Abuse in the case of Rubio’s Restaurants, where the owner of a restaurant was fined for calling his own employees to warn them of a health hazard.
Reference in the United States Supreme Court
- In 2016, Hoffman's Wall Street Journal Article was cited in the Petitioner’s Brief in Campbell-Ewald v Gomez, 136 S. Ct. 663 (2016).
Widely Published in Washington
Testimony Before the Judiciary Committee, U.S. House of Representatives
- In summary, Hoffman's public positions and commentary on TCPA are well known and documented. He draws upon this unique involvement, experience and expertise in TCPA to help corporations, small businesses and entrepreneurs – and their legal counsel – to create effective strategies on TCPA litigation.