More consumers filed lawsuits in U.S. district courts against accounts receivable management and related companies in 2011 than in any other year, according to data released Wednesday by WebRecon LLC.
Notably, Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Telephone Consumer Protect Act (TCPA), and Truth-in-Lending lawsuits were all up very significantly over 2010, each setting new records. FCRA litigation had a big jump after several years of relatively flat numbers, TCPA litigation more than doubled, and TILA nearly tripled over the previous year.
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) litigation set a record as well, but fell just short of the 12,000 cases projected by WebRecon, with 11,811 cases filed in 2011. The data provided by the company are for cases filed in federal U.S. District Courts only.
The growth rate of consumer-originated FDCPA litigation has slowed over the past two years. FDCPA litigation hit its peak growth rate in 2009, when the total number of cases filed increased 52 percent over 2008. The growth rate dropped to 19 percent in 2010, and was just 8 percent in 2011. But there are more cases being filed year over year.
Despite some aggressive challenges from others late in the year, Colorado Springs attorney David M Larson represented 357 consumers in 2011, more than anyone else in consumer financial litigation, followed by Petersburg, Va. attorney Dale Wood Pittman with 309, and Parsippany, N.J .attorney Feng Li with 299, primarily from one giant lawsuit in September.
Led by Larson’s charge, the Denver Colorado district court saw the most suits filed, totaling 658. Philadelphia was 2nd with 634 suits, Los Angeles was 3rd with 623, followed by Chicago with 592 and Newark with 486.
State by state, California led the way with 1,654 lawsuits in 2011. Florida was next with 1,146 lawsuits, followed by New York with 1,128, Pennsylvania with 940 and New Jersey with 711.
Statistics Year to Date, provided by WebRecon:
12,542 total lawsuits for 2011, including:
- 11,811 FDCPA
- 1,838 FCRA
- 660 TCPA
- 1,462 TILA
Number of Unique Plaintiffs: 12,640 (including multiple plaintiffs in one suit)
The most active consumer attorneys of the year:
- Representing 357 Consumers: David M Larson
- Representing 309 Consumers: Dale Wood Pittman
- Representing 299 Consumers: Feng Li
- Representing 260 Consumers: Craig T Kimmel
- Representing 246 Consumers: Sergei Lemberg