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Showing 15 posts in FDCPA.

Read Before You Leap: Providing Telephone Number To Communicate With Collector Does Not Overshadow Validation Rights

The New Jersey federal court has rejected a claim that providing a debtor with a telephone number and other options to communicate with a collector does not overshadow required language that the debtor must dispute the debt in writing within thirty days. The court found that the validation language concerning a consumer's right to dispute the debt under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) must be construed by considering as a whole the letter to the debtor. More ›

New Jersey Federal Judge Dismisses RICO suit against FDCPA Plaintiff Law Firms

Late last year, a debt collection agency went on the offensive and filed a RICO lawsuit against three FDCPA Plaintiff Law Firms, alleging that the Plaintiff Firms filed frivolous class action lawsuits under the FDCPA as a way to generate a quick settlement from them. Last week, Judge Michael Vazquez, in a sometimes scathing opinion, dismissed the suit, siding with the Plaintiff Firms. Judge Vazquez ultimately concluded that the filing of numerous class action lawsuits violates no laws, but is actually "standard practice." He found that the Amended Complaint was both factually and legally deficient, and the allegations that the Plaintiff Firms engaged in frivolous litigation were baseless. Moreover, Judge Vazquez concluded that filing litigation cannot form a basis for mail or wire fraud under RICO.  More ›

Invoking Bigfoot, the Eastern District of New York Highlights the Absurdity of New FDCPA Theories

Suggesting that the latest FDCPA plaintiff's theories in New York have morphed into something other than consumer protection, Judge Glasser of the Eastern District of New York ("EDNY") penned an extensive (and rather scathing) decision detailing the abuse by plaintiffs-consumers (or more precisely, their counsel) in filing lawsuits for non-existent harms. More ›

Bill Introduced in Congress to Exclude Attorneys and Law Firms from the FDCPA's Definition of "Debt Collector"

Yesterday, December 5, 2017, Texas Democrat Vincente Gonzalez introduced a bill in the House of Representatives to amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act’s definition of a "debt collector." The Bill also seeks to amend the supervisory and enforcement authority that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has with respect to attorneys. More ›

New York Federal Court Demands that FDCPA Plaintiffs Read Entire Debt Collection Letter to Determine Creditor's Identity

In Goldstein v. Diversified Adjustment Serv., the Eastern District of New York may have walked back one of the new favorite Fair Debt Collection Practices Act  (the "FDCPA") claims—namely that the creditor was not properly identified pursuant to § 1692g of the FDCPA. Although the debt collection letter at issue listed Sprint several times, Goldstein's complaint nonetheless alleged that the debt collection letter violated the FDCPA by failing to adequately identify to whom the debt was owed and what Sprint's role was. More ›

Overshadowed and Contradicted: Third Circuit Rules Second Demand Letter Violated FDCPA's "Validation Notice" Requirement

The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently reiterated how a debt collector may run afoul of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA") by sending a misleading follow-up, even if it served a compliant demand letter weeks earlier. More ›

Illinois Federal Court Dismisses FDCPA Claims Focused on "Bounced Check" Language in Collection Letter

Recently, an Illinois federal court denied and dismissed two plaintiffs' Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) claims after the plaintiffs failed to present evidence sufficient to establish materiality. More ›

A Cautionary Tale Regarding Case and Witness Preparation in Third Circuit TCPA and FDCPA Decision

In a cautionary tale for the defense bar, the Third Circuit recently upheld a consumer's TCPA claims and reversed summary judgment on the FDCPA claims in Daubert v. NRA, Nos. 16-3613 and 16-3629 (3d Cir. July 3, 2017). More ›

Colorado Latest State to Define Debt Buyers as Debt Collectors; Will Others Soon Follow?

On June 1, 2017, just two weeks before the U.S. Supreme Court's unanimous decision in Henson v. Santander Consumer USA, Inc., Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper signed the revised Colorado Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to specifically include debt buyers in the statute's definition of debt collectors. Colorado is now one of a small number of states that specifically include debt buyers under the law (including New York, California, and Washington). However, other states may follow suit. For instance, Oregon and Maine both have introduced bills to extend the definition of debt collector to include debt buyers. Considering that nearly two dozen state Attorneys General submitted amicus briefs to the Supreme Court in Santander in favor of including debt buyers in the definition of debt collector under the FDCPA, it is possible that more states may follow the lead of Colorado. Ultimately, the various legislatures will decide whether debt buyers should fall within the scope of the state-enacted versions of the FDCPA; but, debt buyers should note, it is likely that Colorado will not be the last state to enact such legislation. Just as Justice Gorsuch noted in his Opinion that these are matters for the legislature and not the Supreme Court to resolve, it appears that at least some states may just take Justice Gorsuch up on his offer and include debt buyers in the scope of their regulatory framework. Ironically, Justice Gorsuch’s home state of Colorado leads the way.

In Unanimous Decision, SCOTUS Shields Debt Buyers From Reach of FDCPA But Important Questions Still Remain

Just two months after hearing argument in Henson v. Santander Consumer USA, Inc., the Supreme Court declined the opportunity to expand the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA") to debt buyers. In an earlier blog post, we noted the potential impact this case may have on the regulation (and marketplace as a whole) of companies that seek to collect defaulted accounts purchased from originating lenders. In his first opinion as a member of the Supreme Court, Justice Neil Gorsuch penned an 11-page decision, affirming the Fourth Circuit's finding that Santander Consumer USA, Inc. ("Santander") did not constitute a "debt collector" under the relevant portion of the FDCPA's definition. More ›

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