Collection Laws and Regulations Feed Link

Collection Laws and Regulations

Debt collectors are regulated by the FTC on the federal level. At the state level, attorneys general are typically responsible for enforcing state and federal laws. A few local governments also separately regulate debt collectors.

The laws that govern the ARM industry are civil, meaning that liability is almost always monetary. So a state’s attorney general will not file criminal charges against a debt collector accused of violating the law, rather, he/she will sue for damages. Collection laws include federal and state statutes that govern the proper operation of companies and personnel that work in the debt collection industry. The most comprehensive collection law is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Other federal laws that collectors must follow include the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and the data security requirements of the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act (GLBA).

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Podcast: Do Consumers Need to Show “Concrete” Injury to Sue Debt Collectors?

The Supreme Court decision in Spokeo v. Robins was expected to provide clarity to debt industry defendants facing FDCPA and related consumer lawsuits where the Plaintiffs’ allege no actual harm. Unfortunately, the case did little to specify exactly what type of “concrete” harm a consumer must allege to pursue a claim, but did provide some excellent language that can be used to refute consumer lawsuits where no actual harm is or could be alleged.

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Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals Determines that a “Debt Collector” filing a Bankruptcy Court Proof of Claim on a Time-Barred Account is an FDCPA Violation

In an opinion issued yesterday in two consolidated cases, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals determined that “a particular subset of creditors—debt collectors”—may be liable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) for bankruptcy Proof of Claim filings on debt they know to be time-barred. Both cases were appeals from decisions from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama.

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Maryland Debt Collection Litigation Bill Signed Into Law

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — On Thursday, May 19th, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed SB 771/ HB 1491 (Chapter 579) into law, addressing the treatment of out-of-statute debt and statutorily codifies several provisions contained in the Maryland Rules of Procedure (MRP) concerning the litigation of consumer debt. Given that the language from the MRP was copied verbatim, DBA International […]

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Appeals Court Affirms that FDCPA Does Not Require Debt Collector Intent to Proceed to Trial When Filing Lawsuit

Yesterday the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals rendered its opinion in Paula St. John, Yvonne Owusumensah, et al., & Bryan Sirota v. CACH, LLC, Cavalry Portfolio Services, LLC; & Unifund CCR Partners, Inc. At issue was whether 15 U.S.C. sec. 1692 e(5) dictates that a debt collector must intend to proceed to trial when it files a lawsuit to collect a debt. The Court agreed with Appellees that e(5) contains no such requirement.

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FTC Warns Industry to Have Robust Credit Reporting Policies and Procedures

FTC Director Jessica Rich’s comments came as part of an announcement by the FTC that it had filed a complaint and proposed order against a Texas-based debt collection agency for having deficient policies and procedures related to borrower credit reporting. Through its proposed order, the FTC clarified its expectations for what credit reporting policies and procedures debt collection agencies need to have in order to avert or withstand regulatory scrutiny.

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Consent Order Compliance: Navigating The CFPB’s Unofficial “Rules” Governing Debt Collection

The CFPB has entered into consent orders with major creditors, debt buyers, and law firms during the past year relating to key areas of their collection practices.  The consent orders impose significant new requirements relating to data integrity, dispute handling, debt substantiation, debt sales, affidavit practices, and litigation practices.  The orders are not formal “rules” […]

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How Spokeo May Limit Consumer Financial Services Litigation

This week’s decision from the U.S. Supreme Court in Spokeo v. Robins should bolster the defense of companies subject to several federal consumer protection statutes. The ruling addresses lawsuits that claim an injury created solely by the violation of a federal statute and require the plaintiff to demonstrate not only that the statute was violated, but that the plaintiff herself suffered harm.