Complying with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is a stiff challenge. The act is designed to safeguard consumers from harassing or predatory calls. Its rules are complex and sometimes difficult to interpret–and failure to adhere can result in large fines.
Collection agencies, debt buyers and credit granters are often under siege, forced to defend against identical claims on multiple jurisdictional fronts, regardless of whether the claims are on behalf of an individual or a putative class. One strategy for consolidating the defense of identical claims is to file a motion with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) to transfer claims to a single venue.
A lawsuit filed in federal court in New York this week is seeking class action status under the TCPA. Named in the case is a major utility and nearly all of its subsidiaries and parent companies, including global holding firms, even though the alleged violation was committed by a third party debt collection agency. It is a continuation of a trend that sees plaintiffs skipping collectors and going straight after the big money.
A federal judge in Illinois recently granted final approval to a $40 million TCPA class action settlement between plaintiffs and credit card issuer HSBC. It is believed to be the third largest settlement ever under the statute with the same judge coincidentally approving the largest ever settlement with Capital One just weeks prior.
The number of lawsuits filed by consumers under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) increased in January compared to the same period in 2014. Lawsuits citing violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) were down in year-over-year comparison. It reverses a trend from the past three years, but 2015 is still young.
Credit card giant American Express last week saw a judge in Illinois deny its motion to dismiss a TCPA class action lawsuit that argues the financial services company is directly liable for damages under the statute even though it did not make the calls in question.
A federal district judge in California last week granted summary judgment to the defendant in a TCPA case that hinged on whether the company was using an “automatic telephone dialing system” (ATDS) under the statute. While not an ARM industry case, the ruling explores present vs. potential capacity in an ATDS.
A coalition of dozens of national associations and business groups Monday sent a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) urging the regulator to address issues that have been raised in numerous petitions concerning the modern application of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
Collection agencies and debt buyers continue to be inundated with FDCPA and TCPA lawsuits, many of which drag on through months and even years of expensive discovery and motion practice. What if there existed a single argument that could be made in many consumer cases that would successfully remove the matter from Court and likely end the case in its entirety?
In 2014, there were 9,720 lawsuits filed in federal courts claiming violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), a decline of 5.7 percent from 2013. It was the third straight year of significant declines in consumer FDCPA case filings.