BREAKING NEWS — OP-ED —
This ruling just out of the United States Third Circuit Court of Appeals:
CLASS ACTION SUIT REVERSED AND REMANDED FOR FURTHER PROCEEDINGS!
Midland Credit Management sent Robert and Donna Schulz separate dunning letters which misstated the rights of the debt collector in reporting a forgiveness of debt as required by IRS regulations, which only applies if the debt is over $600.
The FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practices Act) specifically prohibits a debt collector from using “false, deceptive or misleading representation in connection with the collection of any debt.” 15 U.S.C. § 1692e
The District Court had jurisdiction, but as many U.S. District Court judges do, they favor debt collectors and not debtors and often rule against the debtors, misinterpreting the law or in the alternative, the intent of the law.
The 14-page ruling is an educational tool for both litigants and their lawyers. Understand that MCM knew or should have known better.
This is also a clear and classic example of a STATUTORY VIOLATION as described in the 10-part series GUTTING THE UNDERBELLY OF THE BEAST!
Also, read the footnote on Page 8, where “multiple discharges of indebtedness of less than $600 are not required to be aggregated.” 26 C.F.R. §1.6050P-1(a)(2). That means that the debt collector can’t total up all of the separate debts (even if they add up to more than $600) and use language in their communication to the debtor which violated the foregoing statute or code. Debt collection, as imparted and regulated by the FDCPA, sets specific standards for what constitutes a violation of statute. Understand that the FDCPA provides a remedy, at law. The federal court has jurisdiction because the law is a federal law. There are state debt collection laws that could have been cited in the federal case along with the FDCPA and the Court would have had to apply the applicable State Laws to the case as they were intended by the legislature to be followed. When this doesn’t happen at the state level, we have appellate courts to do our bidding. Just because the judge misinterpreted the law doesn’t mean he should be taken off the bench.
The system of things only applies to his removal if he does something morally or ethically egregious that cannot be resolved by anything other than attacking his bond for provable damages.
I don’t care if he’s a senior judge, like a lot of them are on the federal bench. Also take to heart that the attorneys litigating FDCPA claims these days like to do class actions because there’s more in it for them in attorney’s fees.
However, also note that the special witness in the class action (the Schultz’s) could get up to $25,000 for their testimony in leading the class action. Think about that in part when you apply “the system of things” to statutory violations!
Stay tuned for PART 10 of GUTTING THE UNDERBELLY OF THE BEAST! It’s sure to be a doozey!