Discussion in 'Credit Talk' started by Marshall, Feb 17, 2001.

  1. Marshall

    Marshall Guest

    I just received a letter from a collection agency in reference to a debt that I know NOTHING about. I know that I will question this debt. but I am the bottom of the collection notice it states

    "Federal law gives you thirty days after you receive this letter to dispute the validity of the debt or any part of it."

    HERE'S THE KICKER!!! the letter also states:

    "The law does not require our client to wait until the end of the 30 day period before suing you to collect this debt. If however, you requested proof of the debt or the name and address of the orig creditor within the 30 day period that begins with your receipt of this letter, the law requires our firm to suspend our efforts (through litigation or otherwise" to collect the debt until we mail the requested information to you."

    Now, to me these statements are contradictory . If I have 30 days to dispute the validity of the debt, but they don't have to give me the 30 days before suing me....

    Can they do this? If so, what law are they quoting from?

    **all this..over what they claim to be $36.58**

    Any info would be greatly appreciated.
  2. mba in Pit

    mba in Pit Guest

    Marshall, please e-mail me your e-mail address. I want to learn more about the language on the collection letter you received. Thank you.
    February 18, 2001
  3. PFM

    PFM Guest

    AVILA v. RUBIN, 84 F.3d 222

    We think that telling a debtor he has 30 days [**11] to dispute the debt and following that with a
    statement that "if the above does not apply" you have ten days to pay up or real trouble will start is entirely
    inconsistent, and a failure to comply, with the FDCPA. We think the unsophisticated consumer would be
    scratching his head upon receipt of such a letter. He wouldn't have a clue as to what he was supposed to do
    before real trouble begins. A debt validation notice, to be valid, must be effective, and it cannot be cleverly
    couched in such a way as to eviscerate its message. To protect the uninformed, the naive, and the
    trusting--the sort of people who easily fit under the umbrella of the "unsophisticated consumer"--the notice
    cannot be as misleading and tricky as the one used here by Van Ru and Rubin. We think the validation notice
    was clearly overshadowed by the language that followed on its heels. So, like the district court, we believe
    that both Rubin and Van Ru are guilty of not complying with § 1692g of the FDCPA.

    Claiming that the letters, exhibits A-E, were violations of the FDCPA, n1 Avila filed this suit in the spring of
    1994. Class certification, not challenged here, was granted, and discovery continued until the parties filed
    joint motions for summary judgment on liability. Avila's motion carried the day as Rubin was held liable to the
    class under [**9] §§ 1692g and 1692e(3) and (9) of the FDCPA, and Van Ru was found liable as well under §
    1692g. Van Ru and Avila stipulated to damages of $ 20,000 and judgment in that amount was entered. Then,
    following a bench trial on the issue of statutory damages, judgment was entered for Avila against Rubin for $

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