insideARM maintains a free FDCPA resources page to provide the ARM community a destination for timely and topical information on the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”). This page is generously supported by TransUnion. See the page here or find it in our main navigation bar from any page on insideARM under Compliance Resources.
The centerpiece of the page is a chart of significant FDCPA cases. Case information and analysis is provided by Joann Needleman, a Clark Hill attorney and leader of the firm’s Consumer Financial Services Regulatory & Compliance Group. Click on the link in the chart for the complete text of the decision. Where insideARM has already published a story on the case, we provide a link to the story.
The following are just a few of the FDCPA cases in the spotlight during the last 60 days
Ghanta v. Immediate Credit Recovery, Inc
The gist: Responding to a CFPB complaint disputing the debt and supplying verification through the CFPB portal is not sufficient to comply with the FDCPA. Statute requires that verification be mailed back to the consumer. See insideARM story on the case here.
Midland Funding LLC v. Johnson
The gist: One of the few United States Supreme Court cases involving the FDCPA. Resolving a conflict between various Circuits, the Supreme Court ruled that filing an out of stat proof of claim is not a violation of the FDCPA. See insideARM story on the case here.
Taylor v. Fin. Recovery Servs.
The gist: Collection letters which stated the same balance multiple times in the initial letter and in subsequent letters, where amounts remained unchanged, did not violate the FDCPA because they did not otherwise disclose whether interest was accruing. Also, a statement in the letter about potential tax consequences did not violate the Act. See insideARM story on the case here.
The gist: Debt collector was entitled to seek state statutory interest because they had sought and obtained permission from a state regulator to do so. Debt also arose under state law which allowed for demand of interest before the debt has been reduced to judgment. See insideARM story on this case here.
Barnett v. Healthcare Revenue Recovery Grp.
The gist: A debt collection letter that fully disclosed that the debt may be sold and that a subsequent owner could credit report would not mislead the least sophisticated consumer.
As usual, the cases were both positive and negative for the ARM industry. Readers should be cautious about the applicability of a particular case to their jurisdiction. There are often conflicting decisions on the same or similar issue. A slight change in facts could dramatically impact a future decision.