The number of 1692c(b) lawsuits alleging that a debt collector communicated information with a third party in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act continues to explode in the weeks following the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals’s ruling in Hunstein v. Preferred Collection and Management Services. There have been 42 cases filed across the country since the Hunstein ruling was announced on April 21, with 27 of them class-actions, according to data compiled by WebRecon. There was only one 1692c(b) class-action filed this year before the Hunstein ruling came out, according to WebRecon’s database.
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The exact number of 1692c(b) suits is much higher, however, because one consumer law firm is amending complaints that have already been filed along with filing new complaints and WebRecon’s database had suits that were filed through Thursday, April 29.
Lest collectors think that only companies in the Eleventh Circuit — Florida, Georgia, and Alabama — are being sued, class-action lawsuits have been filed in Pennsylvania, New York, Wisconsin, and New Jersey, along with Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.
In some of the lawsuits, the plaintiff is relying on circumstantial evidence to make the case that the collector used a third-party to print and mail letters. For example, in Borges v. Jefferson Capital Systems (21-cv-21645), the complaint notes that the return address on a collection letter (P.O. Box 1120, Charlotte, N.C.) is different from the defendant’s actual address, and that the P.O. Boxes that sit on either side of the defendant — 1119 and 1121 “are or were associated with three separate out-of-state debt collectors.” That is enough to infer that the defendant did not print and mail the letter in question.
Another complaint, Kastern v. Financial Recovery Service (21-cv-00273), the complaint notes that the return address on an envelope “appears to be associated” with a third-party mail vendor.
Among the cases that have been filed are:
- Medeiros v. Midland Credit Management (1:21-cv-21587)
- Berry v. The Law Offices of Mitchell Bluhm & Associates (4:21-cv-00584)
- Everett v. Alpha Recovery Corp. of Colorado and First Portfolio Ventures I, LLC (8:21-cv-00973)
- Kirby v. Law Office of Mitchell D. Bluhm & Associates and CF Medical, LLC (8:21-cv-00978)
- Kaur v. C.Tech Collections (2:21-cv-02128)
- Luisi v. C.Tech Collections (2:21-cv-02138)
- Schultz v. ARStrat, LLC (2:21-cv-02213)
- Rodriguez v. D&A Services, LLC of IL and Bureaus Investment Group Portfolio No 15, LLC (2:21-cv-02249)
- Johnson v. Aargon Collection Agency (2:21-cv-02265)
- Grippi v. The Levinbrook Law Firm (2:21-cv-02264)
- Rodriguez v. FBCS, Inc. (2:21-cv-02248)
- Marchese v. Professional Claims Bureau (2:21-cv-02263)
- Schultz v. Firstsource Advantage and LVNV Funding (2:21-cv-02244)
- Rizzo v. Aargon Collection Agency (2:21-cv-02246)
- Green v. MRS BPO (1:21-cv-10068)
- Silberman v. Portfolio Recovery Associates (7:21-cv-03592)
- Grogan v. Enhanced Recovery Company (8:21-cv-00966)
- Borges v. Jefferson Capital Systems (1:21-cv-21645)
- Kastern v. Financial Recovery Service (3:21-cv-00273)
- Ratliffe-Horton v. Southwest Credit Systems (2:21-cv-01941)
- Alfonso v. Convergent Outsourcing (1:21-cv-21626)
- Cuevas v. Healthcare Revenue Recovery Group (2:21-cv-00340)
- Kroub v. Financial Recovery Service (1:21-cv-02298)
- Kroub v. C.Tech Collections (1:21-cv-02307)
- Moore v. AllianceOne Receivables Management (0:21-cv-60895)
- Silberstein v. Receivable Solutions (7:21-cv-03721)
- Smekodub v. ARS National Services (1:21-cv-02304)
- Stergakos v. I.C. System (2:21-cv-02312)
- Valentin v. Portfolio Recovery Associates (4:21-cv-00598)
- White v. Midland Funding (1:21-cv-02301)
- Norvell v. First National Collection Bureau (5:21-cv-00579)
- Chavez v. Professional Claims Bureau (2:21-cv-10183)