One of the downsides to sending emails has led to a collection agency being sued for allegedly violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
A copy of the complaint in the case of DeHart v. CollectionCenter, Inc., can be accessed by clicking here.
Earlier this month, the plaintiff noted an item on her credit report from a healthcare facility. The facility had reported a delinquent debt related to the delivery and birth of the plaintiff’s daughter at the hospital. The hospital placed the debt with the defendant for collection.
After noticing the debt on her credit report, the plaintiff contacted the defendant and made a partial payment on the debt. The plaintiff then provided the defendant with her email address so that a receipt could be sent to her electronically. The defendant accidentally sent the email — which contained the receipt and acknowledged the existence of the debt — to someone else. The defendant disclosed this to the plaintiff, according to the complaint, at which point the plaintiff claims to have become “frustrated” with the defendant’s “conduct,” which led her to contact an attorney.
The plaintiff filed suit, alleging the defendant violated Section 1692b(2) of the FDCPA, which prohibits disclosing the existence of a debt to anyone other than the individual with the debt. The plaintiff also accuses the defendant of violating Sections 1692e and 1692f of the FDCPA by making false representations and unfair means to collect on a debt. The plaintiff is accusing the defendant of “implicitly” representing “that it did not have to keep the fact that Plaintiff owes the subject debt as confidential.”