SolarCity class action lawsuit addresses telemarketing practices

solarcity class action lawsuit telemarketing

If you’re a homeowner, you’ve probably experienced unwanted calls from telemarketers trying to sell you products and services. The solar industry isn’t immune to this problem: some of the largest nationwide companies installing solar have historically relied on aggressive telemarketing practices to grow their businesses. Companies like SolarCity have been on the receiving end of many consumer complaints about their telemarketing tactics. A recent class action lawsuit against SolarCity (now part of Tesla Energy) addresses the company’s alleged violation of Federal telemarketing rules.

What is this SolarCity lawsuit about?

The lawsuit, Lucero v. SolarCity Corp., alleges that SolarCity violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) with their telemarketing practices. The TCPA is the law that established the National Do Not Call Registry, where you can register your phone number to avoid unwanted telemarketing calls.

According to the plaintiff in the lawsuit, SolarCity violated the TCPA by calling homeowners who didn’t consent to receive the company’s phone calls. In many cases, the calls were not made by real people in a call center, but were pre-recorded robocalls made using autodialers. The TCPA only allows robocalls and autodialers if the phone call recipient has given their express written consent to the company beforehand.

At this point, SolarCity has reached a settlement agreement with the members of the class action lawsuit. Importantly, this does not mean that the solar company has admitted any fault – SolarCity has agreed to the settlement to avoid the expense of ongoing litigation, but denies the allegations in the lawsuit.

How do I know if I’m eligible for a settlement?

solarcity class action lawsuit mailer

If you received a mailer like this one, you may be eligible for a settlement from SolarCity.

Some of the people who are eligible for a settlement received a letter in the mail informing them of it. However, you don’t need to have received a letter to be eligible. Anybody who received either (1) one or more calls on their cell phones from SolarCity or (2) at least two telemarketing calls from SolarCity during any 12-month period where their phone numbers appeared on the Do Not Call Registry can be a Class Member and is eligible for a settlement.

SolarCity has established a $15 million fund for Class Members. Under the TCPA, you may be able to collect $500 to $1,500 in damages per violation, but the amount that you could receive from the settlement is dependent on how many Class Members submit a claim. The more people who submit claims, the less each Class Member is likely to receive.

What is the timeline for this SolarCity lawsuit?

 The Class Period spans from November 6, 2011 to October 16, 2017, which means that if you received a call offering a SolarCity product in that timeframe you may be eligible for a payment as a Class Member.

If you want to exclude yourself from the settlement, you have until December 15, 2017 to do so. You can file a claim until April 16, 2018.

How do I learn more about the class action lawsuit and settlement? 

There is an official website for the SolarCity TCPA settlement, where you can find important dates and more frequently asked questions. On that website, you can also submit a claim as a Class Member if you received unsolicited phone calls from SolarCity.

PLEASE NOTE: This article was written for informational purposes only as this is a newsworthy topic in the solar industry, but it is not intended to provide any legal advice. We recommend you contact your attorney to obtain specific advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. 





Don



9 thoughts on “SolarCity class action lawsuit addresses telemarketing practices

  1. Terry Capriotti

    This is the problem with our legal system! Nobody was hurt. I get calls all the time – many hang ups. I am on both Do Not Call Registerys. We have to stop suing over every little thing. Was anyone hurt? No! Spend more time on matters that have an impact.

    Reply
    1. Jenn

      Actually these calls are a huge nuisance. I have received calls from aggressive telemarketers and robocalls at my job and home several times a day in some situations. I’ve been called by the same company more than 10 times in one day, at my job. This is a problem and it actually does cause harm, as my employer does not appreciate it. I have been on the do not call registry since 2011. It is against the law for them to call me. They need to be held accountable. If a lawsuit if what it takes to hold them accountable, then so be it.

      Reply
  2. bradley sellers

    I was promised lower electric prices, but my bill actually was higher than before solar city installed panels. I repeatedly tried to contact solar city with no avail. Finally they sent a serviceman to check my system. He reported due to faulty installation that I was running on 50% capacity. The serviceman seemed to fix the problem. I talked to a representative from solar city and he mentioned a refund. I had to send copies of past three years of of PG&E statements for solar city to review. Nothing came of this as solar city said they were incomplete. This was a stack of bills about 3″ tall. Simon Relph was the solar city representative I talked to. He kept giving me the run around. This continued for over 1 year. Finally I was offered a upgraded solar system for a reduced price. I refused this offer because I have lost total trust in the solar city.

    Reply
  3. Emmanuel Shamoon

    I have agreed to have solar city install on their system to my house and had promised that I will save $ 1000.00 per year based on their calculation comparing the MID BILL of one year to their solar power. But turned out that I end up paying more for solar city and MID COMBINED if I new up front that this was the case then would I have them to install their system in my house I need help to remove and cancels the contract I really feel that they gave me falls info and cheering the custome I really need help I want to get out of this big problem

    Reply
    1. D black

      I feel the same way. I was told i would save on my electric bill. The cummalative part of my electric bill averages 30 to 40 $ per month plus the 85 to solarcity. Not much of a savings when im using my roof for my electricity and everyone else also. We want classaction

      Reply
  4. Cindy

    I have the same problem and would like to start a
    Lawsuit . I’ve been told be a Attorney I need 10 people and he would represent us

    Reply
  5. Del Octavio

    As many of you stated, I was also promised a certain production on these solar panels Solar City installed. For 3 years now, all i had is problem with it. My panels were installed horizontal to my roof, even tho, i requested for it to be on an angle. Of course when you do not have an angle on anything, dirt tends to settle on that flat instead of being wash over. They were claiming it is a consumer responsibility to maintain these solar panels, which I do twice a year. But I cannot go up to my roof ( 30ft above floor level ) twice a month just to make sure they are clean. I have tried several times to have them correct this installation, but I am also getting the run around and an excuse that it will void the production rate ( what production? ) and will require another permit from the city. Now, why is this my concern? I will they need to do whatever they can to resolve this issue. I am about to resort to legal action against Solar City. Anybody knows a law firm specilizing in these kind of litigation?

    Reply
    1. Tom Holla

      I know they screwed us all but I don’t think your crooked solar system would be feasibly possible. You rafters have to run exactly parralel or perpendicular to the system for the mounting feet. They have prescribed foot spacings based on system size and your structural design, and local code.. An angled system would 100% leak like crazy and could possibly collapse your roof. We’ve already been boned and by SolarCity and they don’t really care about it. If you are able to reach Teslas potential customers, you will be able to start getting answers. Telsa is obsessed with brand image and they don’t want SC smearing it’s own stinky shit all over their shiney new cars. Public pages on Facebook, Tesla FB, your FB, Twitter blasts, etc are great places to start. Good luck

      Reply

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