Many residents call my office frustrated by door-to-door solicitors, many of whom seem sketchy at best. Some residents have asked about putting up non-solicitation signs at the boundaries of their neighborhood. After checking with our city attorney, I’ve learned that, unfortunately, the courts in Texas won’t allow the city to enforce non-solicitation notices that cover an entire neighborhood.
However, Dallas does have laws that restrict soliciting. In Dallas, solicitation is prohibited on Sunday, New Years Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Monday through Saturday, solicitation is not allowed before 9:00 AM or 30 minutes after sunset. The ordinance exempts a person holding a charitable solicitation permit while engaging in an authorized charitable solicitation.
You can go a step further and prohibit any solicitation at any time, including leaving door-hangers or other advertisements, by posting a sign on your door. Here’s a sign that meets the requirements (you must “conspicuously” display it). If my sign doesn’t match your decor, you can make your own. The only requirements for the sign are that it must be at least 3″ by 4″ in size, the lettering must be at least 1/3″ tall, and it must say “No Soliciting.” If you also want to prohibit leaflets and other advertising, you need to state something like “No Advertisements” or something similar.
If you still get advertisements, keep the card or flyer and call 311 to report the violation. Be sure to ask for a report number so you can follow-up on the report. The incident will be forwarded to Code Compliance in the City computer system. If the compliance officer needs the actual brochures, they will contact you.
If solicitors still come to your door, do NOT open the door, but ask through the door what the individual’s business is and what company they represent. Be sure you let the unwanted person know you are home so they won’t attempt a break-in. Direct their attention to your “No Solicitors” sign. If they leave without objection, you may report the violation with the date, time and name of the company to Code Enforcement as stated above. If the solicitor will not leave or is in any way threatening, call 911 immediately and report the incident.