Deceptive Local Phone Directory Listings

Did you know that the plumber you thought you were calling just down the street may, in fact, have been a subcontractor dispatched by a company operating out of Texas?  This is illegal under the provisions of the Georgia Fair Business Practices Act [O.C.G.A. Section 10-1-393(b)(4)], unless it is very clear that the company listed in your local phone directory is physically located outside your calling area.  Even if you are not charged for a long-distance call, you have a right to know whom you’re dealing with.

In general, the law prohibits deceptive misrepresentation of geographic origin in the marketplace.  The intent of this specific code section is to crack down on companies who disguise the fact that they are based in another state by publishing what appears to be a local number in your phone book or in a free Yellow Pages-type directory covering your area.   If you encounter a deceptive and misleading practice such as this, the Governor's Office of Consumer Protection would like to know about it.