John L. Culhane, Jr.

John L. Culhane, Jr.

Ballard Spahr LLP

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FCC’s Proposed Regulations Would Gut TCPA Exception for Debts Owed to or Guaranteed by U.S.

The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (Act) amended the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to remove the prior express consent requirement for calls ''made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United...more

5/13/2016 - ATDS Banking Sector Bipartisan Budget Cell Phones Comment Period Debt Collection FCC Federal Loans Mortgages NPRM Prior Express Consent TCPA

TCPA Exemption for Collection of Federal Debts Applies Retroactively, CA Federal Court Rules

The new Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) exemption for calls made to cellular numbers to collect debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States applies retroactively to calls made before the exemption's effective...more

4/18/2016 - ATDS Bipartisan Budget Cell Phones Debt Collection Exemptions FCC Federal Loans Federal Student Loans Popular Retroactive Application TCPA

Second Circuit Resolves Lower Court Split over Interest and Late Fees in FDCPA Claims

When a consumer's current balance will increase over time due to interest and late fees, a debt collection notice must disclose this information, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit has ruled. In Avila v....more

4/8/2016 - Debt Debt Collection Disclosure Requirements FDCPA Financial Sector Interest Rates Late Fees Safe Harbors

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

FCC Chairman Previews Proposed Regulations for Implementing New TCPA Exemptions

A recent letter from Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler describes the regulations being considered by the FCC for implementing new Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) exemptions for calls made...more

3/16/2016 - Auto-Dialed Calls Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Exemptions FCC IRS NPRM Popular Prior Express Consent Robocalling TCPA

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

Creditor Can Obtain TCPA "Prior Express Consent" Through Intermediary, Sixth Circuit Rules

A creditor that received a consumer's cell phone number through an intermediary had the consumer's ''prior express consent'' under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to receive calls from a debt collector, the U.S....more

2/29/2016 - Auto-Dialed Calls Cell Phones Corporate Counsel Debt Collection FCC Health Care Providers Popular Prior Express Consent Putative Class Actions Summary Judgment TCPA

ACA International white paper takes aim at misleading use of CFPB complaint data

A new white paper issued by ACA International takes aim at the use of CFPB complaint data by The Alliance for a Just Society in a report titled “Unfair, Deceptive, and Abusive: Debt Collectors Profit from Aggressive Tactics.”...more

2/26/2016 - CFPB Consumer Complaint System Debt Collection Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices

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 sends letter to CFPB on 2015 debt collection activities

The FTC has sent a letter to the CFPB summarizing the FTC’s debt collection activities in 2015. The letter is intended to provide the CFPB with information for its annual report to Congress on the federal government’s FDCPA...more

2/23/2016 - CFPB Debt Buyers Debt Collection FDCPA FTC

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 FTCA

Senators urges Dept. of Education to delay use of robocalls in collection of federal student loans

In a letter sent last week to U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan, four U.S. Senators urge the ED “to direct federal student loan servicers, debt collectors, and all other third parties” to delay use of the new...more

12/29/2015 - Debt Collection Department of Education Federal Student Loans Prior Express Consent Robocalling TCPA

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

Bipartisan Budget Act Creates New TCPA Exemptions

Prior to the amendment, these calls would have been prohibited absent the recipient’s prior express consent if placed to a cellular telephone and if they were made by an automatic telephone dialing system or included an...more

11/9/2015 - Bipartisan Budget Cell Phones Corporate Counsel Debt Collection Prior Express Consent Robocalling TCPA

FDCPA “Communication” Must Imply Existence of a Debt, Sixth Circuit Rules

A voicemail message should not be considered a “communication” that is actionable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has ruled, unless the message at least...more

11/2/2015 - Appeals Debt Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA Financial Institutions Voicemail

CFPB Student Loan Ombudsman highlights FFELP loans in fourth annual report

The CFPB released its fourth Annual Report of the Student Loan Ombudsman discussing complaints received by the CFPB about private and federal student loans and the lessons drawn by the Ombudsman from those complaints. (The...more

10/16/2015 - CFPB Consumer Complaint Management Consumer Financial Products Consumer Lenders Debt Collection DOE Enforcement Actions Federal Student Loans Financial Institutions GAO Loans Private Student Loans Student Loans

NY Amends Debt Collection Regulations, Issues More Guidance

The New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) has amended several provisions of its Third-Party Debt Collector and Debt Buyer Regulations and issued additional guidance in the form of new frequently asked questions...more

9/9/2015 - Borrowers Consumer Financial Contracts Consumer Lenders Creditors Debt Buyers Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA NYDFS Third-Party Agents

CFPB files amicus brief in FDCPA case applying “meaningful attorney involvement” standard to debt collection litigation

The CFPB, jointly with the FTC, has filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Bock v. Pressler & Pressler, LLP, the case in which the district court ruled that a debt collection law firm...more

8/18/2015 - Amicus Briefs Appeals CFPB Debt Collection Debt Collectors FDCPA FTC

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

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

FCC Order Creates New TCPA Challenges for Companies

As previously reported, the Federal Communications Commission recently approved a Declaratory Ruling and Order (the Order) addressing a number of petitions that requested the FCC clarify its interpretations of the Telephone...more

7/14/2015 - Auto-Dialed Calls Collection Agencies Debt Collection Declaratory Rulings Exemptions FCC Financial Institutions Healthcare Prior Express Consent Revocation TCPA Telemarketing Text Messages

CFPB update on student loan complaints continues to highlight co-signer release issues

The CFPB has issued a “Mid-year update on student loan complaints” that analyzes the approximately 3,100 private student loan complaints received by the CFPB betweenOctober 1, 2014 and March 31, 2015. The update also analyzes...more

6/24/2015 - CFPB Consumer Complaint System Consumer Lenders Cosigners Debt Collection Default Information Reports Releases Student Loans Students

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

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