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Stop! Hanging up on this robocall will cost you money

Stop! Hanging up on this robocall will cost you money
© Jonathan Weiss | Dreamstime.com

By now you have probably been trained to doubt anyone who calls and, seemingly out of nowhere, offers you money. It's a good thing, too, because way more often than not it is a scam.

Remember that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Not much has changed with that, but because of a ruling in a recent lawsuit, it is not always the case.

Turns out if you received a telemarketing call back in 2010 or 2011, you could be eligible to receive some money. The problem is, attorneys who are trying to contact people to let them know are being turned away because nobody believes them.

This time it's real

You will still want to treat calls offering money with great skepticism, but if you get one from an attorney talking about a settlement involving Dish Network, listen up. Ironically, many believe the lawyers calling them are telemarketers themselves or, even worse, trying to scam them.

In reality, they are trying to make the telemarketers pay for breaking the law. The case was Krakauer v. Dish Network, and it involved the company not abiding by the Do Not Call Registry.

According to the lawsuit, the early part of the decade saw telemarketers from the company call numbers that were on the registry. In total, just more than 18,000 numbers received an illegal telemarketing call.

The case was brought to court, which is where a jury found DISH guilty of violating the law. The jury then awarded $400 for each of the 51,000 calls that were made while disregarding the registry, but that number was tripled to $1,200 after the judge ruled that DISH "willfully and knowingly violated" the law.

I'm sure that you're hoping you received a couple of calls from Dish, right? You probably don't remember if getting one of the calls, which is why you will want to click here to see if your number is on the list.

The victory (and payments) may be short-lived

Not surprisingly, Dish is appealing the ruling. According to Dish, it was an outside contractor who ignored and violated the Do Not Call Registry, going against Dish's clear instructions in the process.

That company has since shut down, but Dish's appeal remains. It may be a while before a decision is made. While the appeal is hanging in the balance, money will not be paid out.

Meanwhile, attorneys are hoping to find more people who will answer the phone and believe them that yes, they could be in line for some money.

Speaking of legal troubles, Facebook's attorney may be in some hot water

We all remember Mark Zuckerberg's testimony in front of Congress last month, but something his company's lawyer said last October is starting to earn some headlines because it appears he was not particularly truthful. What did he say? Read on to find out.

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