Most of us have received unsolicited phone calls, emails, or mail at one time or another. However, it can be especially frustrating when your elderly relative receives these unsolicited phone calls or letters because they may buy things they don’t need or pay for things they don’t actually owe.
The Federal Trade Commission has put together a list on where you can go to say “no” to these unsolicited points of contact.
There are different options and places to go depending on what type of unsolicited phone calls or mail you are receiving.
If you are receiving prescreened offers of credit and insurance, you have two choices: You can opt out for five years or you can opt out permanently. To opt out for five years, you can call toll-free 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688) or visit OptOutPrescreen.com. To opt out permanently, you can begin the process online at OptOutPrescreen.com. You must return the signed Permanent Opt-Out Election form after you initiate your online request.
The phone number and website are operated by the major consumer reporting companies. When you call or visit the website, you will need to provide some personal information, such as your phone number, name, Social Security number, and date of birth. This information is confidential but necessary to process your request to opt-out. You can also send a written request to permanently opt out of each of the major consumer reporting companies. Make sure to include the above personal information in your request. Here is where you can send the information:
Experian Opt Out P.O. Box 919 Allen, TX 75013
TransUnion Name Removal Option P.O. Box 505 Woodlyn, PA 19094
Equifax, Inc. Options P.O. Box 740123 Atlanta, GA 30374
Innovis Consumer Assistance P.O. Box 495 Pittsburgh, PA 15230
If you would like to opt out of telemarketing calls, you can join the federal government’s National Do Not Call Registry. You can register your phone number or get information about the Registry by visiting DoNotCall.gov or call 1-888-382-1222 from the phone number you want to register. You will get fewer telemarketing calls within 31 days of registering your number. You can remove your phone number from the Registry by choosing to do so or when your phone number is disconnected and reassigned.
In order to opt out of mail telemarketing, you can register at the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) website for a processing fee of $2 for an enrollment of ten years. Registering online is the fastest way to receive fewer telemarketing letters. The website has a simple step-by-step process to decide what gets mailed to you and what doesn’t.
In addition, you can opt out of email telemarketing on the DMA’s eMail Preference Service. If you do not wish to register online, you can register for DMAchoice by using the mail-in form that is available online. If you don’t have access to the internet, you can register by mailing in your name and address, signature, and $3 processing fee (via check or money order) to:
DMAchoice Data & Marketing Association P.O. Box 643 Carmel, NY 10512