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Lack of Standing Is Not Dead as a Defense to TCPA Actions

The Eleventh Circuit, in Salcedo v. Hanna, has concluded that receipt of a single unsolicited text, allegedly sent in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (the "TCPA"), does not constitute a sufficient "concrete injury" to confer standing under Article III of the United States Constitution. More ›

Consumer Law Regulatory Insights: CFPB Symposia Series Discusses How Behavioral Economics Can Inform Regulatory Action

On September 19, 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau) hosted the second in a series of scheduled symposia. After the first symposium, we evaluated the panel discussions that focused on the term "abusive" and whether the Bureau should disclose parameters surrounding its interpretation of the term. The September 19 symposium addressed how behavioral law and economics can inform regulatory action. The discussion consisted of two panels: first, an academic discussion of behavioral economics, while a second panel discussed how behavioral economics can inform regulatory action, or lack thereof, in the consumer financial services field. More ›

FDCPA Claims Dismissed As a Result of Plaintiff's Bad Faith Bankruptcy Conduct

In Vedernikov v. Atl. Credit & Fin., Inc., (Vedernikov I), the U.S. District Court of New Jersey granted the defendant Midland Funding's motion to dismiss, which successfully argued the plaintiff should be estopped from bringing FDCPA claims that he failed to disclose during a bankruptcy action from which he had been discharged. After Midland Funding filed its motion to dismiss in Vedernikov I, the same Court also issued an Order to Show Cause and ultimately dismissed Vedernikov v. Oliphant Financial, LLC (Vedernikov II), another matter brought by the same plaintiff. More ›

New York's Highest Court to Determine Whether Voluntary Discontinuance Revokes Acceleration of Debt

We previously discussed the State of New York's Appellate Division for the Second Judicial Department's holding that a lender's voluntary discontinuance of a judicial foreclosure action by itself, whether by court order or stipulation of the parties, is insufficient to evidence a lender's intent to revoke the acceleration of the entire mortgage debt. Now, the legal landscape in New York might drastically change given the Court of Appeals' grant of leave to appeal in Freedom v Engel. More ›

New Edition of 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations Now Available

An important resource for financial services compliance professionals just received a new update. The Third Edition of the 50 State Guide on Student Loan Servicing Regulations—a quick reference guide and resource for student loan servicers regarding the regulations specific to the industry, along with pending legislation, litigation, and court rulings—now also includes language of the rules implementing state student loan servicer laws. More ›

Case to Watch: U.S. Supreme Court Decision Provides Florida Homeowner Grounds to Challenge Excessive Fees for Code Violations

Cities and towns have become increasingly aggressive in their efforts to avoid blight resulting from vacant and foreclosed properties and enforce the state and local sanitary codes. At what point does a valid code violation enforcement effort become an excessive fee or receiver lien, motivated by cities and towns' need to raise revenue? Is there any way for a property owner to challenge a city's or town's $500/day fine for failing to correct minor code violations? A state court in Florida is currently hearing just such a case. More ›

Emerging Trend: Another Federal Court Finds that Predictive Dialers Fall Outside the TCPA's Definition of an ATDS

In 2018, the D.C. Court of Appeals issued ACA International, et al. v. FCC that set aside key determinations of the FCC's interpretations of what qualifies as an automated telephone dialer service (ATDS). The D.C. Circuit concluded that the focus of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act's (TCPA) definition of an ATDS should be on the device's "present capacity" to store and produce telephone numbers, as opposed to its "potential functionalities" or "future possibility." Since this decision, courts have remained split as to what qualifies as an ATDS, although there is a growing trend of courts concluding that a predictive dialer is not an ATDS unless it has the present capacity to store and produce phone numbers randomly and sequentially. On July 30, 2019, the Northern District of Texas joined that trend with its decision in Adams v. Safe Home Security Inc. More ›

Creditors Beware: Collection of Debt Based on Unreasonable Belief/Understanding That the Debt Was Not Discharged in Bankruptcy Might Lead to a Finding of Civil Contempt

In Taggart v. Lorenzen, the U.S. Supreme Court reviewed the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals' Order, which affirmed the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel's Order vacating civil contempt sanctions against Bradley Taggart's ("Bradley") creditors for violation of a Bankruptcy Court discharge Order. On certiorari to the Court, the central issue was to determine "what the appropriate criteria should be for a Court to hold a creditor in civil contempt for attempting to collect a debt that a discharge order has immunized from collection." And, SCOTUS adopted an objective standard, which creditors should be mindful of going forward. More ›

First Circuit Reverses Course in Closely-Watched Pre-Foreclosure Notice Decision, Defers to Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court

Earlier this year, Hinshaw reported on a decision by the First Circuit Court of Appeals which invalidated a Massachusetts foreclosure based on the Court's determination that the mortgage loan servicer's notice of default included additional language which did not strictly comply with Paragraph 22 of the mortgage. In the wake of that decision, the servicer filed a petition for rehearing on several grounds, but primarily because the Code of Massachusetts Regulations required use of what the Court had characterized as additional language. The banking community also filed several amicus briefs in support of Chase's petition. More ›

Minnesota Decision Marks Growing Split Among Federal Circuits Regarding FCRA Liability for Failure to Mark a Tradeline as Disputed

A recent Minnesota federal court decision (Hrebal v. Nationstar Mortg. LLC) joined a growing number of courts across the country in finding that a creditor's failure to mark a tradeline as disputed can violate the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) without a consumer having to prove that a reasonable investigation could have uncovered an actual inaccuracy. This trend has created a split between courts in the Fourth, Eighth, and Eleventh Circuits and the First, Fifth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits. More ›

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