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What Is the Main Function of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 ?

In Zelma v. Konikow (2005) 379 N.J. Super. 480 879 A.2d 1185, 1188, a New Jersey case that court found no indication that the federal catchall limitations provisions should not apply to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA), since the TCPA postdated the enactment of the catchall statute.

The state court said:

"The provisions of the TCPA that make its civil action available only 'if otherwise permitted by the laws or rules of court of a State,' 47 U.S.C.A. § 227(b)(2), (c)(5), provide no clear indication of intent to exclude TCPA claims from the scope of § 1658.

In Zelma v. Market USA (2001) 343 N.J. Super. 356 778 A.2d 591, a previous opinion, the Court held that the phrase 'if otherwise permitted by' state law and court rules was intended to provide states an opportunity to 'opt-out' of the TCPA and to recognize that states may apply neutral rules and procedures to foreclose TCPA actions. In reaching that conclusion, we considered the purpose of the phrase as explained by federal courts. 'Congress understandably avoided opening federal courts to the millions of potential private TCPA claims ... . Similarly concerned over the potential impact of private actions on the administration of state courts, Congress included a provision to allow the states to prohibit private TCPA actions ... .' The length of a limitation period has no obvious relevance to the volume of litigation or the extent of the burden imposed on courts of this state." (Zelma v. Konikow, supra, 879 A.2d at pp. 1188; cf. Edwards v. Emperor's Garden Restaurant (Nev. 2006) 130 P.3d 1280, 1287.)