A pair of defendants accused of contacting a professional plaintiff in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act have had rulings issued in different lawsuits by District Court judges in Pennsylvania.
In the first suit, the defendant’s motion to dismiss was denied even though the plaintiff maintains a website for his business, Final Verdict Solutions, which is in the judgment collection business. On the website, he advertises that he is going to sue any telemarketer who calls his phone and warns companies to “hire a good lawyer.” The defendant sought to have the case dismissed, arguing the plaintiff could not have suffered an injury-in-fact. The plaintiff’s claim that the defendant used an automatic telephone dialing system because he heard “a distinctive click and pause” was enough for the judge to determine there was a “plausible inference” that a predictive dialer was used, and denied the motion to dismiss.
In the second suit, the defendant’s motion for summary judgment was partially granted and partially denied. The defendant was able to get the claim that it violated the Do Not Call Registry tossed, because the plaintiff’s cell phone is used for his business and business lines are not allowed to be listed on the Do Not Call Registry. The defendant in this case also tried to argue that the plaintiff lacked standing to sue because he is a “professional TCPA litigant” who “has formulated a business model to encourage telemarketers to call his cellphone number so that he can later sue the telemarketers under the TCPA.” But because the plaintiff’s claims relative to the judgments he has received and is collecting on are not clear as to whether they are just his or whether he is collecting on behalf of someone else, the judge declined to fully grant the defendant’s summary judgment motion.