Collector Facing Class Action Over MVN’s Use of ‘Now’

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Yesterday, we wrote about the word “obligation” being the source of issue in a Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and lamented that one word could be the difference between a lawsuit being filed and not, and today is yet another example of that. Today’s word, though, is “now” as in “Total amount of the debt now” in the Model Validation Notice, which has led to a class action being filed against a collector for allegedly violating the FDCPA.

A copy of the complaint in the case, filed in District Court for the District of Colorado, can be accessed by clicking here.

The plaintiff received a Model Validation Notice from the defendant. Following the template of the MVN, the notice was undated. So when it detailed the “Total amount of the debt now:” the plaintiff had to expend time and money to mitigate the risk of future financial harm, suffered emotional distress, and had his financial reputation damaged because the debt was reported to credit reporting agencies, according to the complaint, all because “now” was not defined in the notice.

As well, the letter “sets forth” that the balance owed may increase because of late fees, interest, and other costs because those items were included in the notice’s itemization table.

The complaint accuses the defendant of violating Section 1692e(2)(A), 1692e(10), 1692f, and 1692g of the FDCPA. It seeks to include anyone in Colorado who received a similar notice from the defendant where the letter “sets forth that the debt owed may increase because of interest, late charges and costs, when no such increase(s) will accrue.”

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