Christopher J. Willis

Christopher J. Willis

Ballard Spahr LLP

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Application of FDCPA to Social Security benefits at issue in CFPB Second Circuit amicus brief

The CFPB has filed an amicus brief in support of the plaintiff in Arias v. Gutman, Mintz, Baker & Sonnenfeldt, PC and 1700 Development Co., a FDCPA case on appeal to the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. In its...more

11/17/2016 - Amicus Briefs Banking Sector Banks CFPB Debt Collection Default Judgment Elder Issues FDCPA Garnishment Landlords Rent Social Security Benefits Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices

Envelope’s Display of Barcode With Embedded Account Number Does Not Violate FDCPA, Court Rules

A federal district court in Florida has ruled that a debt collector did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by sending a collection letter in an envelope that allegedly revealed a barcode in which the...more

11/10/2016 - Article III Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA Financial Sector Financial Services Industry Injury-in-Fact Spokeo v Robins Standing

4th Circuit: Filing Proof of Claim on Time-Barred Debt Did Not Violate FDCPA

A debt collector did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by filing proofs of claim in bankruptcy cases on debts that were time-barred by Maryland’s statute of limitations (SOL), a divided U.S. Court of...more

9/12/2016 - Bankruptcy Code Chapter 13 Consumer Bankruptcy Corporate Counsel Debt Buyers Debt Collection FDCPA Financial Sector Financial Services Industry Proof of Claims Statute of Limitations Time-Barred Debt

Voicemail Message Without Express Statement It Was From Debt Collector Did Not Violate FDCPA, Ninth Circuit Rules

A debt collection law firm did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by leaving a voicemail message for the plaintiff that identified the law firm but did not expressly state that the law firm was a debt...more

8/12/2016 - Appeals Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Debt Collectors Disclosure Requirements FDCPA Financial Sector Financial Services Industry Voicemail

Third Circuit Remands "Meaningful Attorney Involvement" Decision

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has vacated the district court's decision in Bock v. Pressler & Pressler, LLP in which the district court ruled that a debt collection law firm violated the Fair Debt Collection...more

8/5/2016 - Appeals Article III CFPB Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA Financial Services Industry Injury-in-Fact Spokeo v Robins Standing Statutory Damages

CFPB Previews Debt Collection Rule in SBREFA Outline

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has moved a step closer to issuing a debt collection rule by releasing an outline of the proposals it is considering in preparation for convening a small business review panel....more

8/1/2016 - CFPB Debt Buyers Debt Collection Debt Collectors Dodd-Frank FDCPA Financial Sector SBREFA Small Business Third-Party Service Provider Time-Barred Debt

FTC Highlights FDCPA Risks for Debt Collectors Using Social Media, Texts

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently published a reminder to debt collectors of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) compliance risks that are created by the use of social media or text messages in connection...more

4/1/2016 - Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) Cell Phones CFPB Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Debt Collectors Facebook FDCPA FTC Popular Risk Management Social Media TCPA Text Messages

FTC Gets 3 Million Consumer Complaints in 2015

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received more than 3 million consumer complaints in 2015 with debt collection topping the list, according to its newly released Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book. The annual report, which...more

3/8/2016 - CFPB Consumer Complaint Database Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FTC Identity Theft Sweepstakes Telecommunications

Voicemail Messages on Debtor's Phone Did Not Violate FDCPA, Federal Court Rules

A debt collector did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by leaving a voicemail message on a cell phone shared by the debtor with her boyfriend because it was not reasonably foreseeable that he would...more

2/23/2016 - Cell Phones Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FDCPA Voicemail

FTC Announces ''Operation Collection Protection'' Developments

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced new developments in ''Operation Collection Protection,'' its new coordinated federal-state enforcement initiative targeting unlawful debt collection practices. The U.S....more

1/16/2016 - Attorney Generals CFPB Debt Collection DOJ Enforcement Actions FDCPA FTC FTC Act

Eighth Circuit Dismisses FDCPA Claims Based on Affiant’s Alleged False Attestation of Personal Knowledge

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently ruled that a plaintiff’s allegation that an affiant had falsely attested to having personal knowledge of the facts alleged in a debt collection complaint was...more

12/2/2015 - Debt Collection False Statements FDCPA Putative Class Actions

Envelope’s Display of Internal Tracking Number Does Not Violate FDCPA, New York Federal Court Rules

A federal district court in New York has ruled that a debt collector did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by sending a collection letter in an envelope that allegedly revealed an internal tracking...more

11/19/2015 - Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FDCPA FTC Motion for Judgment

New York City Can Regulate Attorney Debt Collection Conduct, Second Circuit Rules

New York City can regulate the conduct of attorneys engaged in debt collection, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has ruled. In Eric M. Berman, P.C. and Lacy Katzen, LLP v. City of New York, et al., the...more

8/10/2015 - Consumer Financial Contracts Debt Collection Debt Collectors Licensing Rules Popular Preemption Young Lawyers

Envelope’s Display of Bar Code With Embedded Account Number Violates FDCPA, Federal Court Rules

A federal court in Pennsylvania has ruled that a debt collector violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by sending a collection letter in an envelope that allegedly revealed a barcode in which the plaintiff’s...more

7/29/2015 - Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA Financial Institutions Motion to Dismiss

11th Circuit: Representations by Attorneys in Debt Collection-Related Court Filings Actionable Under FDCPA

In Miljkovic v Shafritz & Dinkin, 2015 WL 3956570, a panel of the 11th Circuit held that representations made by an attorney in required court filings during the course of debt collection litigation can be actionable under...more

7/24/2015 - Creditors Debt Collection FDCPA First Impression Pleading Standards Pleadings

Maryland Appeals Court Declines to Adopt “Meaningful Attorney Involvement” Standard

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals recently declined to adopt the “meaningful attorney involvement” standard for Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) claims based on alleged insufficient attorney involvement in debt...more

7/24/2015 - Appeals Claim Preclusion Collateral Estoppel Debt Buyers Debt Collection Debtors FDCPA Midland Funding Res Judicata

State AG – Credit Bureaus Settlement: What Furnishers Need to Know - More than 30 state attorneys general reached a settlement...

Last week, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine issued a press release announcing the results of a multi-state investigation into the three national credit reporting agencies (CRAs) - Equifax Information Services LLC, Experian...more

5/29/2015 - CFPB Credit Reporting Agencies Credit Reports Debt Buyers Debt Collection Equifax Experian FCRA TransUnion

Ninth Circuit Rules FDCPA and California Law Do Not Prohibit Collection Letter Seeking Prejudgment Interest

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit recently ruled that a debt collection letter seeking prejudgment interest on the debt did not violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) or California’s Rosenthal...more

5/20/2015 - Appeals Debt Collection FDCPA Prejudgment Interest

New York Federal Court Denounces Debtor’s Attempt To Induce FDCPA Violation

A New York federal district court recently issued a strong denunciation of the practice of debtors attempting to induce debt collectors into committing violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Finding...more

2/26/2015 - Audio Recording Debt Collection FDCPA Federal Rules of Civil Procedure

New York Issues Far-Reaching Debt Collection Regulations

The New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) published its final debt collection regulations on December 3, 2014, following an extensive rulemaking period. The regulations impose requirements on third-party debt...more

12/8/2014 - Debt Buyers Debt Collection Department of Financial Services Disclosure Requirements Electronic Communications FDCPA New Regulations Prior Express Consent

Another Federal Court Rules Debt Collector’s Voice Message Does Not Violate FDCPA

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York recently ruled that a voicemail message containing the caller’s name and identifying the caller as a debt collector with “an important message” was not a...more

11/19/2014 - Confidential Communications Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FDCPA Voicemail

FDCPA Violated by Letter Suggesting Consumer Can Avoid Litigation Only by Paying Debt, First Circuit Rules

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit held that a collection letter sent by an attorney violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) because it would lead a “hypothetical unsophisticated consumer” to...more

9/15/2014 - Appeals Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FDCPA Written Notice

FDCPA Is Violated When Consumer’s Account Number Is Visible through Window of Debt Collector’s Envelope, Third Circuit Holds

In a precedential opinion rendered last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit held that the disclosure of a consumer’s account number through the transparent window of a debt collector’s envelope violates...more

9/5/2014 - Appeals Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA Privacy Laws

FTC Settles with Two Debt Collectors over Alleged FDCPA and FTC Act Violations

The debt collection industry continues to be a major focus of the Federal Trade Commission’s enforcement efforts, as shown by the agency’s decision to simultaneously announce two settlements last week with Tennessee and New...more

8/13/2014 - Debt Debt Collection FDCPA FTC FTC Act Popular

W.Va. Requires Time-Barred Debt Disclosures in ‘Initial Written Communication’

The West Virginia Legislature recently passed H.B. 4360, which amended Section 46A-2-128 of the West Virginia Code, that defines what constitutes unfair or unconscionable debt collection activities. The amendments are...more

4/17/2014 - Debt Debt Collection Disclosure Requirements UDAAP

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