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DISCLAIMER: This article is based on a complaint. The defendant has not responded to the complaint to present its side of the case. The claims mentioned are accusations and should be considered as such until and unless proven otherwise.
Sending an individual a Model Validation Notice has led to a law firm facing a Fair Debt Collection Practices Act lawsuit, because the law firm allegedly knew the individual was being represented by an attorney, according to a complaint filed in the District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.
A copy of the complaint can be accessed using the case number 22-cv-04198.
The individual incurred what appears to be a student loan debt that went into default. The debt was placed with a collection law firm, which sent the plaintiff a collection letter. The plaintiff then retained counsel, according to the complaint, and the attorney sent the law firm a letter — which the firm allegedly acknowledged it received — informing them that the plaintiff was being represented and requesting validation of the debt.
The debt was then assigned by the law firm to the defendant. The firm allegedly informed the plaintiff’s attorney that the debt was being assigned to another firm, and the attorney had three conversations with the defendant to discuss potential settlement of the debt.
Two weeks later, the plaintiff received a validation notice from the defendant. The plaintiff’s attorney never gave permission for the defendant to contact the plaintiff directly, according to the complaint.
The complaint accuses the defendant of violating Sections 1692(c) and 1692f of the FDCPA, as well as provisions of the Georgia Fair Business Practices Act by sending the plaintiff a letter despite knowing he was being represented by an attorney