Judge Grants MTD Over Current Creditor’s Name in Letter

A District Court judge in New York has granted a defendant’s motion to dismiss after it was sued for allegedly violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act because the plaintiff claimed she did not owe any money to the defendant named in a collection letter, even though the letter “clearly and unambiguously” identified the original creditor.

A copy of the ruling in Greifman v. Cawley & Bergmann, LLC, can be accessed by clicking here.

The plaintiff received a collection letter from the defendant, in which it stated that she owed “a debt to `JH Portfolio Debt Equities, LLC.’ ” Even though the letter also stated the name of the original creditor and did not state that the plaintiff incurred an original debt with JH Portfolio Debt Equities, LLC, the plaintiff filed suit, alleging the letter violated Sections 1692e and 1692g of the FDCPA. The plaintiff contended that the letter misrepresented that she has never been indebted to JH Portfolio Debt Equities, LLC and misidentified the company as the creditor.

“Viewing the letter from the least sophisticated consumer, the document is neither false, confusing nor misleading,” wrote Judge Nelsons Roman from the District Court for the Southern District of New York.

The letter, Judge Roman wrote, “clearly identifies the current creditor, JH Portfolio Debt Equities, LLC, the original creditor, Citibank N.A./Citi Simplicity Card, the amount of the debt, and that [the d]efendant has been contracted to collect a debt owed by [the plaintiff] to JH Portfolio Debt Equities, LLC.”

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