The number of lawsuits filed by consumers against ARM companies claiming violations of the FDCPA, FCRA, and TCPA increased in September from August, WebRecon LLC said Friday. But FDCPA lawsuits are still on track to show significant declines for the year.
- FDCPA lawsuits were up 5.5 percent in September to 783 from 740 in August.
- FCRA lawsuits were up 11.9 percent to 177 in September from 156 in August.
- TCPA lawsuits were up 2.1 percent to 193 in September from 189 in August.
Through the first three quarters of 2014, FDCPA lawsuits are down 12 percent compared to this time last year. If the trend holds, it will mark the third-straight year of annual declines in FDCPA lawsuits with the decreases accelerating each year.
TCPA lawsuit, meanwhile, are on pace to continue their meteoric rise. Through the end of Q3 2014, the cases are up nearly 30 percent from 2013. In 2013, TCPA suits were up a staggering 70 percent from 2012.
Consumer attorneys have increasingly turned their attention away from the low-award, hard to prove FDCPA cases to more lucrative and litigation-friendly TCPA statute. A consumer-driven shift to mobile telephones combined with a law that has not kept pace with societal changes makes TCPA cases much more attractive right now.
WebRecon also noted that of the 783 FDCPA cases filed, 73 (9.3%) of them are class actions. Of the 177 FCRA lawsuits filed, 12 (6.2%) are class actions. And of the 193 TCPA lawsuits filed, 24 (13.6%) are class actions. The TCPA percentage was particularly high in September, the firm said.
Finally, 31 percent of consumers who filed litigation in August are considered repeat filers, having filed similar litigation in the past.