Consumer Protection

Sallie Mae Telemarketing

Result: $24.15 million class action settlement
Year: 2012

In September 2012, United States District Court Judge James L. Robart of the Western District of Washington granted final approval to a $24.15 million class action settlement in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (the "TCPA") collection calls case against Sallie Mae and other affiliates and subsidiaries of SLM Corporation. The settlement was the largest monetary TCPA settlement ever to receive final approval. In addition, under the settlement, borrowers can require that automated calls from Sallie Mae and affiliated debt collectors no longer be placed to their cellular telephone number by completing a simple request form.

The complaint charged that Sallie Mae and other affiliates and subsidiaries of SLM Corporation made unauthorized calls and sent text messages to cellular telephones of borrowers through the use of automated telephone dialing systems and/or an artificial or prerecorded voice (also referred to as "automated calls"). The complaint alleged that these calls violated the TCPA, which prohibits abusive telephone practices by lenders and marketers, and places strict limits on the use of automated calls to call or send texts to cell phones.