May 2017

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Businesses across America are waiting with bated breath for a ruling in ACA International, et al. v. FCC, a case brought by a debt collection industry group challenging the FCC’s order interpreting the Telephone Consumer Protection Act with an extraordinarily broad brush. A three-judge panel from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia heard oral argument late last year and a decision is expected any day now. (more…)

Last month oral arguments were heard by the U.S. Supreme Court in the matter of Henson v. Santander Consumer USA Inc. The case focuses on Santander’s activity while they were collecting defaulted auto loans and if said activity is covered under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The FDCPA only applies to “debt collectors” so the question becomes who is a “debt collector” under the FDCPA. Santander is arguing that they ceased to remain a debt collector the moment they purchased the assignment of the debt they were collecting. They argue at that moment they are not collecting debt that was owed or due another, rather they were collecting debt they were owed. This case will settle a circuit split amongst the appeals courts with the Third, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Circuits, and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals holding that collectors of purchased defaulted debt are debt collectors within the meaning of the FDCPA, while the Fourth, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits all holding that collectors of purchased defaulted debt are not debt collectors within the meaning of the FDCPA. (more…)