Is there any reason to call the police on a door-to-door salesman?

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Is there any reason to call the police on a door-to-door salesman?

I’m in door-to-door business-to-business office supply sales. Every once in a while someone will threaten to call the police because of my cold calling. I always just assume they’re bluffing and leave. There are usually “No Soliciting” signs posted, but I’ve learned that most people won’t even mention it. I always leave if someone asks me to.

Asked on January 19, 2012 under Business Law, Tennessee

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

An argument can be made that if you enter onto property, even the front walk, lobby, etc., when there are "no soliciting" signs out, that you are trespassing if soliciting sales or business is your purpose--in that instance, permission has been revoked for anyone to come onto the property for solicitating, so your entry would be completely unpermissioned.

That said, I'm not aware of any cases where a door-to-door salesman has been arrested for just ringing the bell (so to speak), and I can't imagine the police taking a call from a business that a salesman visited them seriously.

Were you to not leave after being specifically told to leave, that would be a different matter--in that case, you might be committing defiant trespass, and the police take those calls more seriously.


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