The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) contends that consumers cannot make the best decisions about how to handle debts unless they receive clear, truthful, and unambiguous information. The complaint for this class action alleges that an attorney working as a debt collector did not provide accurate or truthful information about the amount of a debt he was attempting to collect.
The class for this action is all persons to whom Michael C. Koehn mailed a written communication, to an address in Wisconsin, between June 21, 2017 and July 12, 2018, which is substantially in the form of Exhibit A attached to the complaint for this case.
Plaintiff Bruce Long allegedly incurred a debt to “EMS Franklin,” perhaps for personal medical services for him or for his benefit. At some point, Koehn received the task of collecting the debt.
The letter begins, “Please be advised that we have been retained to represent the above named creditor and their interests as they relate to an account balance that this creditor claims is owed by you. We note the amount due below.” Beside Koehn’s signature is the amount “$787.90” with no further designation.
However, the complaint claims that the balance of the debt was increasing every day. It says that if the amount was the correct balance on the date of the letter, it was not the correct amount when Long received the letter.
In addition, the complaint claims that Koehn had no “direct personal involvement” in sending the letter to Long. It claims that if he had considered the particular circumstances of Long’s case before sending the letter, he would have disclosed that the debt was accruing interest and therefore increasing every day.
Thus the complaint says that Koehn used “false, deceptive, and misleading representations or means” in sending the letter to collect the debt, and that he also failed “to properly disclose the amount of the Debt…” Both of these are violations of the FDCPA.