Just the fax: Heart center sues over unsolicited invites

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St. Louis Heart Center in Missouri, “on behalf of itself and all others similarly situated,” filed a lawsuit against Forest Pharmaceuticals over its practice of sending unsolicited faxes.

The provider claims that between Jan. 4, 2011, and Aug. 3, 2012, Forest sent 40 unsolicited faxes to its office without prior permission or invitation. The faxes included offers to attend presentations about the drug maker’s hypertension treatment at restaurants such as Morton’s of Chicago. The invitation promised an “interactive and dynamic dinner program.”

The unsolicited faxes violate the U.S. Telephone Consumer Protection Act, according to the suit. St. Louis Heart Center is seeking between $500 and $1,500 for each violation.

“Unsolicited faxes damage their recipients,” the plaintiffs wrote in the suit filed in the Circuit Court of the St. Louis. The document listed loss of use of the fax machine, paper, ink toner and time among those damages.

“A junk fax interrupts the recipient’s privacy,” it continues. “Unsolicited faxes prevent fax machines from receiving authorized faxes, prevents their use for authorized outgoing faxes, cause undue wear and tear on the recipients’ fax machines, and require additional labor to attempt to discern the source and purpose of the unsolicited message. A junk fax consumes a portion of the limited capacity of the telecommunications infrastructure serving the victims of junk faxing.”  

Forest has offices in St. Louis. The suit also names Peer Group of West Trenton, N.J.