Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 59.1. Trade and Commerce
Chapter 33. Pay-Per-Call Services Act

§ 59.1-430. Required disclosures.

A. Every pay-per-call service advertisement or solicitation shall disclose (i) that a fee in excess of applicable telephone company or long distance carrier charges, if any, is charged for calls to the telephone number provided; (ii) the per-minute or flat-rate charges for the calls; (iii) the average length of call, measured in minutes, required to receive the service; (iv) whether additional calls to other pay-per-call services are required to obtain the full benefit of the service; and (v) the information provider's name, business address, and business telephone number.

In television advertisements, the price disclosure shall be preceded by a dollar sign, stated in arabic numerals, positioned in the lower portion of the television screen in letters large enough to be easily read by viewers and displayed during the entire time the telephone number is displayed. In written materials, the cost of the call shall be printed in ten-point bold-faced type immediately adjacent to the pay-per-call service telephone number.

B. The disclosures required by subsection A of this section shall be conspicuously displayed in a manner reasonably intended to furnish advance notice of the pay-per-call service's total cost.

C. Every information provider shall disclose to the customer at the beginning of each call for which pay-per-call charges are incurred the per-minute or flat-rate charges for the pay-per-call service if (i) the per-minute rate charged is two dollars or more; (ii) the flat-rate charge is five dollars or more; or (iii) the pay-per-call service is intended for children under the age of twelve, regardless of the amount charged. In addition, pay-per-call services intended for children under the age of twelve shall also include an introductory statement that children should obtain prior parental approval before calling the service. The information provider shall also provide a delayed timing of information charges.

D. Every information provider shall provide a period of a minimum of twelve seconds for a delayed timing of information charges and price disclosure message. If the delayed timing period is exceeded, a consumer shall be billed from the time of the initial connection, and transport charges shall be billed to the information provider from the time of the initial connection. If the consumer disconnects the call within the delayed timing period, no information charge shall be billed to the caller.

During the delayed timing period, the information provider shall inform the consumer of any information required by subsection C of this section and of all of the following: (i) the name of the programs; (ii) the date the information was recorded, if the information is a recorded message; and (iii) that if the caller disconnects the call within the delayed timing period, the consumer will not be charged for the call.

1991, cc. 608, 630; 1992, c. 284.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.