In an October 2008 Order on Reconsideration in response to petitions for reconsideration filed by fax advertisers seeking to reduce compliance costs associated with FCC rules and regulations implementing the Junk Fax Prevention Act of 2005 ("Junk Fax Order"), the FCC has clarified that:

  • a fax sender may rely on third party compilations of facsimile numbers voluntarily made available by the recipient from the recipient's own "directory, advertisement or Internet site." Nevertheless, a fax sender must still have an established business relationship with the recipient in order to send the fax advertisement, and will be "liable" for any errors of its third-party contractor; 
  • "reasonable steps" to verify a recipient has made its fax number available for public distribution may include methods other than contacting the recipient directly by phone or email, but the fax sender will have the burden to demonstrate that the recipient agreed to make the facsimile number available for public distribution; 
  • a fax sender satisfies the the requirement of a providing clear and conspicuous notice of a cost-free mechanism for transmitting opt-out requests when the opt-out notice directs the recipient to a dedicated webpage enabling the recipient to opt-out of future facsimile advertisements. The FCC declined to reconsider its decision that the first page of the fax advertisement must contain the opt-out notice. 
  • Finally, the FCC declined to reconsider its decision not to limit the duration of requests to opt out from receiving unsolicited fax advertisements. The FCC concluded that not requiring repeated opt-out requests best protects recipients from "the direct costs" imposed by receipt of unwanted faxes.