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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.
A class-action complaint has been filed in federal court in Utah against a collection law firm for allegedly violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act with its Model Validation Notice, which was not dated, but also because the debt was allegedly purchased before the notice was sent, and the complaint alleges the phrase “you had an account from” that company is technically not accurate. You may also find the MVN used in this case interesting because it has a few differences from the CFPB’s Model Validation Notice — none of which were mentioned in the complaint.
A copy of the complaint can be accessed by clicking here.
The plaintiff received a Model Validation Notice from the defendant. The complaint alleges the notice fails to identify the original creditor and instead uses the name of the company that purchased the debt from the original creditor. The complaint alleges the phrase “You had an account from …” is false, misleading, and/or deceptive because the plaintiff never had an account with that company. The notice does include a disclaimer that “Midland Credit Management, Inc. has purchased the above-referenced account and is the current creditor.”
The complaint also alleges that the defendant violated the FDCPA because, without a date, the plaintiff had no way to determine what “today” and “now” referred to in the notice, which was allegedly misleading.
The complaint accuses the defendant of violating Sections 1692d, 1692e, 1692e(2)(A), 1692e(10), and 1692f of the FDCPA. It seeks to include anyone else who received a similar undated MVN in reference to a debt owed by the creditor named in this notice.
One interesting sidenote is that the defendant altered the standard MVN to include QR codes to a customer portal so the recipient could chat with a representative and to its payment portal.