The CFPB announced Monday it has filed a lawsuit against a debt collection law firm and its three principal partners alleging that the firm was a “lawsuit mill” that churned out debt collection actions and violated the FDCPA en masse. The firm denies the claims and says it will defend the action in court.
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The FCC last week threw another clarifying wrinkle in the struggle to understand “express prior consent” to call a cell number for the purpose of debt collection. In an amicus brief, the agency explored some nuance in its 2008 TCPA declaratory ruling while clarifying another ruling from this year.
Gordon Beck, Chief Operating Officer of Diversified Consultants, Inc., based in Jacksonville, Florida, sat for an interview last week with ABC World News with Diane Sawyer. Beck said ABC set out to investigate TCPA lawsuits where companies – including collection agencies – dialed wrong numbers. ABC producers told Beck that he was the only collection agency official that agreed to be interviewed.
On July 14, 2014, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”), a Federal regulatory body created by the Dodd Frank Act of 2010 mounted a frontal attack on this bedrock of separation of powers principle by filing suit in the United States District Court against a prominent consumer collection law firm, Frederick J. Hanna and Associates, P.C. of Atlanta Georgia.
Addressing what it termed “a deluge [that] has swept through U.S. bankruptcy courts of late,” the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Crawford v. LVNV Funding, LLC last week held that filing a proof of claim on time barred debt is conduct that violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
The issue of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine’s alleged favoritism in rewarding a debt collection contract boiled over on the weekend as his office released official collection totals for last year and a prominent newspaper published a blistering editorial on the matter.
In what is being touted as the largest TCPA settlement ever, Capital One and three collection agencies have agreed to pay $75.5 million into a settlement fund to end litigation in a combined class action. The agreement admits no wrongdoing on the part of the companies for allegedly using autodialers and/or pre-recorded messages in calls to cell phones without the consumers’ express consent.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) said Tuesday that it is extending the comment period for its proposal to add consumer narratives to the public complaints database it manages. The proposal would give consumers the chance to explain exactly what lead to a complaint.
A federal class action lawsuit in Seattle alleges that a collection agency used the King County prosecutor’s seals on debt collection letters to consumers, while failing to disclose that the letter was from a collection agency and not a law enforcement office. The plaintiffs say they received seemingly official letters from Missouri-based collection agency Bounceback which included threats of jail time if consumers didn’t pay the amount of the debt and more than $180 in fees. Bounceback was able to use the county prosecutor’s seal on these collection letters because it participates in a “check enforcement program,” where county prosecutors rent out the prosecutor’s seal and letterhead in exchange for a cut of the collection fees.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act played to packed audiences through two sessions Wednesday at ACA International’s 75th Anniversary Convention & Expo in Chicago. At issues for those in the debt industry are: effective consent language and present capacity.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Wednesday announced that it is proposing to expand its consumer complaints public database to include the consumer’s narrative description of what happened, along with a company response narrative. The announcement came on the three-year anniversary of the CFPB’s launch.
The New York State Department of Financial Services (NYSDFS) today published a proposed rule in the New York State Register on debt collection by third-party debt collectors and debt buyers. The proposal is subject to a 30-day comment period which began July 16.
Allied Collection Services, Inc. (ACSI), a specialty provider of collections, outsourcing, and litigation solutions based in Las Vegas, announced that it has hired Michael A. Chamberlain as Executive Vice President.
A federal judge in Maryland this week sided with a collection agency in a TCPA case involving the question of “prior express consent” to call a cell phone number that was provided by the consumer. The decision mirrors another recent case in a trend that shows judges moving away from the controversial Mais decision.
We’ve all seen the headlines lately with the statistics of lawsuits rising against collection agencies, of penalties handed down by the CFPB and the courts, of settlements against collection agencies and even speculation that the business of debt collection is going the way of the dinosaur. But is the business of collections really going away, or is it just going through another change?
Numerous recent FDCPA lawsuits challenge the ability of debt collectors to assess interest to accounts. These cases focus on a number of factors including whether collection letters need to disclose the accrual of interest and also interest on purchased accounts.
Rudy Knepper, President of Stoneleigh Recovery Associates (SRA), announced today that SRA has added Mark Savoie to their roster as Vice President of Business Development. In this role, Mr. Savoie will use his experience and his extensive professional network to grow SRA into one of the top industry providers of accounts receivable management services.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced Monday that it will accept consumer complaints about additional non-bank products such as debt settlement services. The CFPB has been receiving consumer complaints about debt collection since November 2013. It’s not as easy to submit a complaint about a debt settlement service, or any other non-bank service, as it […]
The vast majority of collection opportunities within the student loan marketplace have been with state and federal government clients, private guarantors (like Sallie Mae), and private lenders (like large financial institutions). So, what’s available today? That’s the topic of a webinar scheduled for Tuesday, 29 July 2014, at 2.00 p.m. Eastern, sponsored by FICO. REGISTER […]
RevSpring is pleased to announce emerge as its new transformational, Web-based communication and payments platform. RevSpring’s emerge will offer integrated, multiple communication and payment channels including text, email, IVR as well as a flexible online payment portal that makes it easy for a consumer to make a payment from any device. As consumer communication and […]
Kinum, a Salt Lake collection company with a national presence, is celebrating their first year of business. The company, which previously operated as Fidelis Collections for six years, focuses on helping businesses implement better collection procedures while maintaining their client base. Kinum’s President and industry veteran Bruce Klinger states, “We recognized our clients’ two primary […]
At first glance, the differences between the U.S. and Israeli debt collection industries couldn’t be more stark: In Israel, lawyers are typically responsible for debt collection, while in the U.S., the debt collection licensing requirements vary from state to state. But TrueAccord, a new start-up founded by Ohad Samet, actually goes over the heads of […]
Now that the industry has had the chance to take a deeper dive into the details of the New York Department of Financial Services’ proposed regulations for debt collection by third-party debt collectors and debt buyers, experts and organizations are submitting their feedback on how to further improve the regulations. Specific questions remain about the correct language to use in consumer notices, and how the rules may impact creditors.
DialConnection, LLC, a rapidly growing provider of cloud-based software-as-a-service (“SaaS”) and premise-based contact center solutions for enterprise clients, today announced an investment in the company by Potomac Equity Partners, LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based investment firm whose principals have extensive experience investing in the software and technology sectors. DialConnection provides a suite of integrated contact center […]
Keith Jones, President of Sales & Marketing, is pleased to announce that Stellar Recovery, Inc. has been recognized by the Jacksonville Business Journal as the 45th fastest growing company on their annual Top 50 List. This is the second year in a row that Stellar Recovery has earned this prestigious award after coming in at […]
Companies that hire vendors to place automated calls to cell phones may find themselves at greater risk for Telephone Consumer Protection Act troubles following a decision from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Thomas v. Taco Bell Corp. The recent decision follows a May 2013 ruling from the Federal Communications Commission in In re […]
Despite the advances of the Patient Protection and Affordable Healthcare Act (ACA) related to patient debt (establishing maximum out-of-pocket expenses and other protections), most healthcare finance analysts believe bad debt will increase over the coming years. LexisNexis, in this free whitepaper, has put together recommended best practices from a wide range of healthcare providers who […]
International banking regulators issued a new set of principles calling for a “college of supervisors” to oversee the global banking business, according to The New York Times’ Dealbook. The idea, explains University of Pennsylvania professor David Zaring, is to create a team of regulators for globally important banks that would share information fluidly enough to make […]
Larger participants in the debt industry need to prepare for CFPB supervision, and an essential part of that preparation will be to establish a formal compliance management system.
On July 21, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will mark its fourth anniversary. The consumer financial watchdog, created by Congress in the during the financial crisis, has done a lot for consumers in just a few years, having tackled important issues such as consumer complaints, payday lending, student loans and – of course – debt collection.