Non-solicitation states - where is it illegal to send direct mail?


  • Hi there,

    Does anyone know in which states sending out blind offers (or direct mail in general) is illegal? I have heard of Idaho, Kansas, South Carolina, Illinois, Nebraska, Montana and Vermont. Can anyone confirm those states? Any other states? Do you eliminate mailing addresses that are in those states (even if you mail another supposedly "safe" state, do you eliminate out-of state owners who come from these states where sending mail to is illegal)? If you don’t know, could someone maybe recommend an attorney who could advise on that?

    Thanks,

    Johannes


  • Johannes Pieper that's a good question. Out of curiosity, where did you hear that it's illegal to send out direct mail in those states? Was this an authoritative source, or just a "word on the street" kind of thing that someone mentioned in passing?

    And also, what kind of direct mail are we talking about? The term "direct mail" is a VERY broad term that applies to pretty much any kind of message sent out in bulk... which could be coming from a charity, or a credit card company, or a political campaign, or the government itself, so before we jump to the conclusion that all direct mail is illegal, it would help to know (if that's even true), what exactly makes it illegal?

    I know you don't have these answers. I just mention these things because they're probably worth thinking about while we try to find the facts.

  • Mod LIM

    Hi Johannes Pieper.  There was a previous thread (https://retipster.com/forum/to...) that discussed a couple of these states, at least, in some brief amount of detail.  I don't personally have any additional knowledge on the topic to add, but it was my understanding that even among the states with non-solicitation statutes, there's possibly some significant amount of variance.  Such as, some might exclude real estate related solicitations from the prohibition, while others might not.


  • Thanks to both of you.

    These states were mentioned by another - credible - land "guru" in his Youtube show (without digging too deep into the subject, though). But you're both of course right when you say that even in those states not all direct mail may be illegal. At the end of the day, it probably comes down to your risk tolerance. I understand that taking risks is part of being an entrepreneur, but when it comes to questions of legality, I just need to be on the safe side. For the time being, I will simply remove all recipients who live in one of the states where I have heard that the legality is at least questionable. Also, I am sticking to those states where I know that at least some land flippers are working in. If I lose some deals that way, so be it. Still, I would prefer really knowing what the law says about direct mail in all 50 states. I am trying to find an attorney who can help but most of them will not know the marketing / promotions laws of all 50 states. And if I do find an attorney who is that specialized and knowledgeable, he will probably not be cheap...


  • Johannes Pieper it's an interesting question, to be sure. I don't think anyone has definitively found the answers you're looking for, but I'd be interested to know them as well if you're able to find them.


  • I think it could be illegal to send direct mail to sell anything.

    But we do not sell anything with blind offers or neutral letters, right?

    Another thing is direct Email which is particularily forbidden in a lot areas.

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