Telefacsimile messages — Unsolicited transmission — Penalties.
(1) As used in this section, "telefacsimile message" means the transmittal of electronic signals over telephone lines for conversion into written text.
(2) No person, corporation, partnership, or association shall initiate the unsolicited transmission of telefacsimile messages promoting goods or services for purchase by the recipient.
(3)(a) Except as provided in (b) of this subsection, this section shall not apply to telefacsimile messages sent to a recipient with whom the initiator has had a prior contractual or business relationship.
(b) A person shall not initiate an unsolicited telefacsimile message under the provisions of (a) of this subsection if the person knew or reasonably should have known that the recipient is a governmental entity.
(4) Notwithstanding subsection (3) of this section, it is unlawful to initiate any telefacsimile message to a recipient who has previously sent a written or telefacsimile message to the initiator clearly indicating that the recipient does not want to receive telefacsimile messages from the initiator.
(5) The unsolicited transmission of telefacsimile messages promoting goods or services for purchase by the recipient is a matter affecting the public interest for the purpose of applying the consumer protection act, chapter 19.86 RCW. The transmission of unsolicited telefacsimile messages is not reasonable in relation to the development and preservation of business. A violation of this section is an unfair or deceptive act in trade or commerce for the purpose of applying the consumer protection act, chapter 19.86 RCW. Damages to the recipient of telefacsimile messages in violation of this section are five hundred dollars or actual damages, whichever is greater.
(6) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the Washington utilities and transportation commission from adopting additional rules regulating transmissions of telefacsimile messages.
[1990 c 221 § 1.]