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.
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.
Is the next step in debt collection rulemaking drawing near? Last week the Bureau issued notice of yet another extension, however this one is shorter than those previously announced.
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.
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.
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” […]
In a unanimous decision issued today, the United States Supreme Court held that private attorneys hired by the Ohio Attorney General to collect debts owed to state agencies were “state officers” otherwise exempt from portions of the FDCPA, and that even if the private attorney didn’t have “state officer” status, using Ohio AG letterhead did not violate the FDCPA.
In an Order dated May 5, 2016 a Federal Judge in New York has determined that a decision he rendered in the matter of Halberstam v. Global Credit and Collection Corp. (U.S. District Court, ED, NY, 15-cv-5696 (BMC) earlier this year should be certified for an immediate interlocutory appeal. (Editor’s Note: Interlocutory actions are certified by courts when an issue presents a question of law that should be answered by an appellate court before a trial may proceed or to prevent irreparable harm from occurring to a person or property during the pendency of a lawsuit or proceeding. Generally, courts are generally reluctant to make interlocutory orders.)
In a Memorandum Opinion and Order filed on May 9, 2016 a U.S. District Court Judge for the Northern District of Illinois granted Summary Judgment in favor of the plaintiffs in a FDCPA lawsuit involving publicly traded debt buyer Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC.
April’s FDCPA-related cases include some positive outcomes and some negative outcomes for the industry. Review the list, and our at-a-glance case law resource, powered each month by Joann Needleman of ClarkHill.